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I am writing an article for school, and am trying to find the term used to describe a chapter which starts with a quote; my supervisor has said that there is a term for it, but he cannot remember what it is!.

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

migrated from writers.stackexchange.com Oct 23 '14 at 17:56

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    I think the term is cliche – ACD Oct 22 '14 at 19:12
  • This is a question about identifying a term, and not about writing. I'm going to send this to English Language and Usage. Have you attempted to find this word yourself? If so, please edit the question to indicate this. English may close the question there otherwise. – Neil Fein Oct 23 '14 at 17:56
  • @NeilFein Heh ... from Writers to ELU, and now an unintentional duplicate on Literature. This query sure gets around! – Rand al'Thor Oct 10 '17 at 7:46
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Starting a chapter with a quote is known as an Epigraph

So sayeth Wikipedia:

In literature, an epigraph is a phrase, quotation, or poem that is set at the beginning of a document or component.

And Google Define:

epigraph ˈɛpɪɡrɑːf/ noun

  1. an inscription on a building, statue, or coin.
  2. a short quotation or saying at the beginning of a book or chapter, intended to suggest its theme.
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    That's the name for the quote, not the chapter. But I think it's what he wants, even though not what he asked for. AFAIK, there is no special name for such a chapter, unless it's "epigraphical chapter," which is stupid. – dmm Oct 22 '14 at 17:59
  • @dmm, H'mm I see what you mean actually. "What's the name for /Starting/ a chaper..." sounds like he's looking for the name of the process. I would guess the process is known as "epigraphy", but that is a real word meaning the study of incriptions. Meh, I've drawn a blank and Google refuses to yield an answer, so haha I'm gonna agree with you that there's no special name :-) – Mac Cooper Oct 22 '14 at 18:14
  • It's quite possible that the OP or the teacher is confused about precisely what he wants a word for, or just didn't express it properly in the question. – Barmar Oct 27 '14 at 19:21
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You're all not reading the definition carefully enough. Epigraph means "a short quotation or saying at the beginning of a book OR CHAPTER."

The answer to his question is: "epigraph."

Oh, I see, I think he misspoke. He doesn't mean the name of the chapter; that's silly. He means the name of the quotation.

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