1.any word or phrase applied to a person or thing to describe an actual or attributed quality: “Richardthe Lion-Hearted” is an epithet of Richard I.
a characterizing word or phrase firmly associated with a person or thing and often used in place of anactual name, title, or the like, as “man's best friend” for “dog.”
a word, phrase, or expression used invectively as a term of abuse or contempt, to express hostility,etc.
Oxymoron a figure of speech in which incongruous or seemingly contradictory terms appear side by side; a compressed paradox. Plural: oxymoraor oxymorons. Adjective: oxymoronic or oxymoric.
Here are some common examples of oxymoronic expressions: act naturally, random order, original copy, conspicuous absence, found missing, alone together, criminal justice, old news, peace force, even odds, awful good, student teacher, deafening silence, definite possibility, definite maybe, terribly pleased, ill health, turn up missing, jumbo shrimp, loose tights, small crowd, and clearly misunderstood.
Hyperbole (hīpûr`bəlē), a figure of speech in which exceptional exaggeration is deliberately used for emphasis rather than deception. Andrew Marvell employed hyperbole throughout "To His Coy Mistress":
An hundred years should go to praise
Thine eyes and on thy forehead gaze;
Two hundred to adore each breast;
But thirty thousand to the rest
Understatement. A figure of speech in which a writer or speaker deliberately makes a situation seem less important or serious than it is. Contrast with hyperbole.