An Introduction to Anemographia

Anemographia (etymologically from Greek, literally “a piece describing the wind”), is a kind of EnargiaOpens in new window which in its description, consists of a vivid and illusionary movement of the wind. The manner of its description often bring about physical presence or an aura of reality.

Anemographia typically features in literary works when describing abstract attributes of the wind.

Notable Examples of Anemographia
  • “A suffing young nurse wind stroking her night rounds, smoothing open soft windows.”
  • “A grief wind, grave-heavy gibbet wind, sadness so thick you can brand it.”
  • “The wind rushed and swirled around the room throwing the leaves of paper parading across the room. It hummed through the windows and exhaled up the chimney. It was all I could do to stand still in its vicious currents.”

Other Rhetorical devices such as onomatopoeia and asyndeton or its relatives are crucial to the development of effective visual description of wind. For example, employing OnomatopoeiaOpens in new window will resonate or imitate the sound of the wind; likewise, the use of AsyndetonOpens in new window will give the wind its rightful movement, and the use of Iambic Pentameter will give the poetic pattern which most resembles wind. (Gregory T. Howard)

Further Readings:
Silver Rhetoricae, Figures | AnemographiaOpens in new window
Gregory T. Howard, Dictionary of Rhetorical Terms | AnemographiaOpens in new window