According to the Random House Dictionary, an allusion is "a passing or casual reference; an incidental mention of something, either directly or by implication." It is a common practice in literature to make allusions to a variety of sources. The following lists describe some common allusions to Greek or Roman mythology, the Bible, other works of literature, and history. These resources will help you determine why a character is described as having an "Achilles heel," the "patience of Job," or an "Oedipus complex." But hopefully not all three!

Mythological Allusions

Biblical Allusions

Literary Allusions

Historical Allusions

LSSU's Banished Words of the Year Writing & Language