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- The first type of ambiguity is the metaphor, that is, when two things are said to be alike which have different properties. This concept is similar to that of metaphysical conceit.
- Two or more meanings are resolved into one. Empson characterizes this as using two different metaphors at once.
- Two ideas that are connected through context can be given in one word simultaneously.
- Two or more meanings that do not agree but combine to make clear a complicated state of mind in the author.
- When the author discovers his idea in the act of writing. Empson describes a simile that lies halfway between two statements made by the author.
- When a statement says nothing and the readers are forced to invent a statement of their own, most likely in conflict with that of the author.
- Two words that within context are opposites that expose a fundamental division in the author's mind.
- Richards, I. A. (1936). The Philosophy of Rhetoric. Oxford University Press. [^]
- Korzybski, Alfred (1933). Science and Sanity: An Introduction to Non-Aristotelian Systems and General Semantics. 5th ed., Institute of General Semantics, 1994. [^]
- Magritte, René (1933). The Human Condition (La condition humaine). National Gallery of Art, Washington DC. [^]
- Wells, H. G. (1933). The Shape of Things to Come. Hutchinson. [^]
- Empson, William (1930). Seven Types of Ambiguity, 2nd ed., London: Chatto & Windus, 1949. [^]
- Magritte, René (1929). The Treachery of Images (La trahison des images). Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, California. [^]
- Ogden, C. K. & I. A. Richards (1923). The Meaning of Meaning: A Study of the Influence of Language upon Thought and of the Science of Symbolism. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd. [^]