At face value, the lines between verbal irony, sarcasm, and compliments can be blurry. After all, the phrase 'That looks nice' could be all three depending on the circumstances. In the final of a three part series on irony, Christopher Warner gets into the irony you may use most often and most casually: verbal irony.
How do you define verbal irony? The word derives from the Latin word 'ironia' meaning feigned ignorance.
Here's a video showing some examples of verbal irony from modern examples like Mean Girls, Rhianna songs, Sponge Bob Square Pants, and more.
Here's a worksheet that may help you better understand verbal irony.
Leaps and bounds separate that which is ironic and that which many people simply say is ironic. Christopher Warner wants to set the record straight: Something is ironic if and only if it is the exact opposite of what you would expect. See the lesson on situational irony here.
You’re in a movie theater, watching the new horror flick. The audience knows something that the main character does not. The audience sees the character's actions are not in his best interest. What's that feeling -- the one that makes you want to shout at the screen? Christopher Warner identifies this storytelling device as dramatic irony. See the lesson here.