Antithesis Statement

Last Updated: April 26, 2024

Antithesis Statement

Antithesis, a powerful rhetorical device, thrives on presenting contrasting ideas in a harmonious manner. It’s the play of light and shadow in a writer’s toolkit. Our guide on Antithesis Statement is designed to take you on a journey through the nuances of this literary technique. Dive deep into meticulously curated thesis statement examples, understand the essence of crafting compelling antitheses, and imbibe tips that will elevate your writing to an artistic expression of balanced contrasts.

What is an Antithesis Statement?

An antithesis statement is a rhetorical device that juxtaposes two opposing or contrasting ideas within a sentence or passage to create a balanced contrast. It’s a tool used by writers and speakers to emphasize differences and create poignant expressions through direct contrast.

What is the Best Example for Antithesis Statement?

One of the most famous examples of antithesis is found in William Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar”: “Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more.” This point thesis statement juxtaposes the love for an individual against the love for a whole country, drawing attention to Brutus’ conflicting loyalties and justifying his actions.

100 Antithesis Statement Examples

Antithesis Statement Examples
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Antithesis Statement Examples highlight the art of juxtaposing contrasting ideas to create impactful expressions. These statements emphasize the beauty of opposites, illuminating profound truths through the balance of contrasting words or sentiments. Dive deep into these examples to appreciate the power of antithesis in enhancing the depth and meaning of a phrase or argument. You may also be interested in our hypothesis statement.

  1. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” – Charles Dickens
  2. “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.” – John Milton
  3. “Many are called, but few are chosen.”
  4. “Speech is silver, but silence is golden.”
  5. “Man proposes, God disposes.”
  6. “Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice.” – William Shakespeare
  7. “You’re easy on the eyes, but hard on the heart.”
  8. “Love is an ideal thing, marriage a real thing.” – Goethe
  9. “To be or not to be.” – William Shakespeare
  10. “Money is the root of all evils: poverty is the fruit of all goodness.”
  11. “The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.” – Abraham Lincoln
  12. “Ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country.” – John F. Kennedy
  13. “They promised freedom and provided chains.”
  14. “One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.” – Neil Armstrong
  15. “You are the wind beneath my wings.”
  16. “Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” – James Baldwin
  17. “Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall.” – William Shakespeare
  18. “The sun is new each day.” – Heraclitus
  19. “I’d rather be a hammer than a nail.”
  20. “Evil men fear the good, and the good fear the evil.”
  21. “We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
  22. “They got together like oil and water.”
  23. “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.” – Muhammad Ali
  24. “The hurtful sting of love, the peaceful balm of hate.”
  25. “It’s not the years in your life that count, it’s the life in your years.” – Abraham Lincoln
  26. “In peace you are for war, and in war you long for peace.” – Cicero
  27. “Hatred stirs up conflict, but love covers over all wrongs.”
  28. “He who desires peace, should prepare for war.”
  29. “The loud praise of enemies is a faint damnation.”
  30. “The more you think, the less you know.”
  31. “In order to lead, one must follow.”
  32. “While the mind sees only boundaries, love knows the secret way there.”
  33. “The modern world belongs to the half-educated, a rather difficult class because they do not realize how little they know.” – William R. Inge
  34. “With malice toward none, with charity for all.” – Abraham Lincoln
  35. “The passions of the young are vices in the old.”
  36. “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but you can’t stop it from chasing cars either.”
  37. “Though I am not naturally honest, I am sometimes so by chance.” – William Shakespeare
  38. “Where there is agreement, there can be no debate.”
  39. “No pain, no gain.”
  40. “The more you judge, the less you love.”
  41. “When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.” – Jimi Hendrix
  42. “While we speak, time is envious and is running away from us.” – Horace
  43. “Success makes so many people hate you. I wish it wasn’t that way. It would be wonderful to enjoy success without seeing envy in the eyes of those around you.” – Marilyn Monroe
  44. “If you want to be happy, be.” – Leo Tolstoy
  45. “The desire for safety stands against every great and noble enterprise.” – Tacitus
  46. “If you chase two rabbits, you will not catch either one.”
  47. “When angry, count ten before you speak; if very angry, a hundred.” – Thomas Jefferson
  48. “Patience is bitter, but its fruit is sweet.” – Jean-Jacques Rousseau
  49. “Truth is simple, lies are complex.”
  50. “To err is human; to forgive, divine.” – Alexander Pope
  51. “Winners never quit, quitters never win.”
  52. “The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.” – Aristotle
  53. “I can resist everything except temptation.” – Oscar Wilde
  54. “Destruction leads to a very rough road, but it also breeds creation.” – Red Hot Chili Peppers
  55. “I’m a dreamer and a realist.”
  56. “The silence isn’t empty, it’s full of answers.”
  57. “You can save money by spending it.”
  58. “War does not determine who is right – only who is left.”
  59. “Mountains do not rise without earthquakes.”
  60. “The darkest hours have only sixty minutes.”
  61. “The bigger they are, the harder they fall.”
  62. “Ignorance, the root and stem of all evil.” – Plato
  63. “You can’t drown if you don’t get wet.”
  64. “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill
  65. “If it weren’t for the last minute, nothing would get done.”
  66. “There is no light without shadow.”
  67. “You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don’t ever count on having both at once.” – Robert A. Heinlein
  68. “If you wish to reach the highest, begin at the lowest.” – Publilius Syrus
  69. “The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  70. “Less is more.”
  71. “The first shall be last.”
  72. “We live in a world where bad stories are told, stories that teach us life doesn’t mean anything and that humanity has no great purpose.” – Donald Miller
  73. “There is no love without hate.”
  74. “It’s bittersweet.”
  75. “The heart that loves is always young, but the love that hearts is always old.”
  76. “It’s awfully simple to be good, but it’s mighty hard to be simple.”
  77. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend.”
  78. “The beginning of the end.”
  79. “It’s always darkest before the dawn.”
  80. “I must be cruel to be kind.” – William Shakespeare
  81. “The more you know, the less you understand.” – Lao Tzu
  82. “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” – William Shakespeare
  83. “The eye by long use comes to see even in the darkest cavern: and there is no subject so obscure but we may discern some glimpse of truth by long poring on it.” – John Locke
  84. “He who knows only his side of the case, knows little of that.” – John Stuart Mill
  85. “To love is to suffer, to avoid suffering one must not love. But then one suffers from not loving.” – Woody Allen
  86. “He who establishes his argument by noise and command shows that his reason is weak.” – Michel de Montaigne
  87. “Hunger is the best sauce.”
  88. “While Rome burns, Nero fiddles.”
  89. “We find comfort among those who agree with us, and growth among those who don’t.”
  90. “You have to be cruel to be kind.”
  91. “He’s the king of the castle, but she wears the pants.”
  92. “Courage is found in unlikely places.”
  93. “While the pot boils, friendship blooms.”
  94. “Where there is smoke, there is fire.”
  95. “He’s a shining star in a dark universe.”
  96. “He’s a night owl in a world ruled by early birds.”
  97. “Truth emerges more readily from error than from confusion.” – Francis Bacon
  98. “One man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter.”
  99. “We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.” – Kenji Miyazawa
  100. “You can be a king or a street sweeper, but everybody dances with the Grim Reaper.” – Robert Alton Harris

These antithesis statements showcase the beauty of contrast and juxtaposition in language and thought

Antithesis Statement Examples in Figure of Speech

Antithesis in figures of speech is a rhetorical device that juxtaposes contrasting ideas or terms, often in parallel structure. This can emphasize differences, create a striking contrast, and enhance the meaning or clarity of an expression.

  1. “It’s not the years in your life but the life in your years.”
  2. “They promised freedom but delivered slavery.”
  3. “Speech is silver, but silence is golden.”
  4. “Man proposes, God disposes.”
  5. “To err is human, to forgive, divine.”
  6. “You can be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
  7. “Love is an ideal thing, marriage a real thing.”
  8. “With malice toward none, with charity for all.”
  9. “We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”
  10. “When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace.”

Antithesis Statement Examples in Literature

Literary antithesis serves to make a work more intriguing, creating a balance or conflict between two opposing forces or ideas. This tool provides readers with a richer, multifaceted view of characters, situations, and thematic concerns.

  1. “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” – Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities
  2. “Give me liberty, or give me death!” – Patrick Henry
  3. “Not that I loved Caesar less, but that I loved Rome more.” – Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
  4. “Fair is foul, and foul is fair.” – Shakespeare, Macbeth
  5. “One small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind.” – Neil Armstrong
  6. “I must be cruel only to be kind.” – Shakespeare, Hamlet
  7. “The things that hurt, instruct.” – Benjamin Franklin
  8. “Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.” – Shakespeare, Hamlet
  9. “I burn and I freeze.” – Latin Antithesis
  10. “Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall.” – Shakespeare, Measure for Measure.

How to Write an Antithesis Statement: A Comprehensive Guide

1. Understand the Basics: Antithesis refers to a rhetorical device in which two opposite ideas are put together in a sentence to achieve a contrasting effect. It emphasizes the difference between two ideas and enhances their individual properties.

2. Purpose of Antithesis: The primary aim is to create a balance between two contrasting things, thus highlighting their differences or contrasts vividly. This can make your argument stronger or make your expression more memorable.

3. Steps to Writing an Antithesis Statement:

  • Choose your main idea: Start with a clear idea or concept you want to discuss.
  • Find its direct opposite: Think of what contrasts with that idea most effectively.
  • Craft a parallel structure: Ensure the two contrasting ideas are presented in a parallel manner, enhancing the effect.

For instance: “To err is human; to forgive, divine.” In this statement, the act of erring is contrasted with the act of forgiving, emphasizing the distinction between human frailty and divine perfection.

What is an example of antithesis in communication?

In communication, antithesis can serve to either emphasize a point or to present two sides of an argument.

Example: During negotiations, one party might say, “We can choose to move forward with progress or stay stuck in the past.” The choice between “moving forward” and “staying stuck” serves to highlight the benefits of progress.

What is an Antithesis Argument Example?

Antithesis arguments often present two sides of a debate or topic.

Example: In a debate on environmental conservation, a speaker might argue, “We can either invest now in sustainable energy and enjoy a cleaner future, or we can continue our current practices and face the consequences.” This sets up an opposition between investing in sustainability and facing potential environmental consequences.

How do you use Antithesis in a Sentence?

Using antithesis in a sentence requires placing contrasting ideas in close proximity to each other, often in parallel structures. Here’s how:

1. Choose two contrasting concepts or ideas.

2. Frame them in a way that they oppose each other directly.

3. Structure the sentence so that these ideas are presented in parallel.


  • “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.”
  • “She is eager to learn, yet hesitant to take risks.”
  • “You are easy on the eyes, but hard on the heart.”

By using antithesis, your sentence or argument becomes more compelling and memorable due to the inherent tension between the contrasting elements. In addition, you should review our speech thesis statement.

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