The Nose Literary Elements

The Nose Literary Elements


A satirical short story

Setting and Context

The action takes place in St. Petersburg, on the 25th of March.

Narrator and Point of View

The narrator of this short story is third-person.

Tone and Mood

This short story has a sarcastic and sometimes ironic tone.

Protagonist and Antagonist

The main protagonist is Major Kovalyov. The main antagonist is his nose.

Major Conflict

The major conflict doesn’t happen between Major Kovalyov and his nose; rather, it happens between Kovalyov and the perception of his life. He just doesn’t appreciate things which he has, and this situation has changed him.


The climax happens when the main character gets his nose back. In other words, he realizes the importance of life.






This story alludes to St. Petersburg and Nevsky Avenue.


Imagery plays an important role when depicting St. Petersburg with its majestic streets, and thus helps to produce an image of its splendor


The paradox arises when Major Kovalyov loses his nose, then after he meets it and begs his nose to return. It may sound ironic, but he speaks with his part of body.



Metonymy and Synecdoche

The author uses the phrase “to want that thing hanging around here a minute longer” in his short story, this introducing a form of metonymy that involves indirect phrasing ("thing").


The nose as a part of body is construed as a person, who runs, speaks, and dresses up.

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