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Virtues of style

 

Disciplines Argument > Virtues of style

 

These are the five elements of style in writing and speaking that were identified by the early Greeks as essential methods of creating effective rhetoric. By examining each one, both the true virtues can be identified and also the vices of style, which are effectively their opposites.

  • Correctness: following the rules of language.
  • Clarity: speaking or writing to be understood.
  • Evidence: creating internal evocative experiences.
  • Propriety: using language apt for the situation.
  • Ornateness: using elegance and impressive style.

Style in language is a very helpful part of persuasion. It is not only the message that persuades but also the words used and the more subtle connotative meaning. Eloquence in itself is persuasive, as it indicates an attractive intelligence.

See also

Types of reasoning, Five canons of rhetoric

 

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