Oxymoron: The rhetorical term for the combination of words, generally epithet and subject, of opposed and contradictory meanings effecting a kind of verbal paradox, as e.g. Tennyson:--
'His honour rooted in dishonour stood,
And faith unfaithful kept him falsely true.'
Also Horace, Odes: 'Splendide mendax.'
How to cite the article:
Vivian, Percival. A dictionary of literary terms. London: G. Routledge & sons. 1900. Shakespeare Online. 20 Aug. 2010. (date when you accessed the information) < http://www.shakespeare-online.com/literaryterms/oxymoron.html >.