trope (n.) Look up trope at Dictionary.com
1530s, from Latin tropus "a figure of speech," from Greek tropos "a turn, direction, course, way; manner, fashion," in rhetoric, "turn or figure of speech," related to trope "a turning" and trepein "to turn," from PIE root trep- (2) "to turn" (cognates: Sanskrit trapate "is ashamed, confused," properly "turns away in shame;" Latin trepit "he turns"). Technically, in rhetoric, "a figure of speech which consists in the use of a word or phrase in a sense other than that which is proper to it" [OED], "as when we call a stupid fellow an ass, or a shrewd man a fox" [Century Dictionary].