1

The dictionary says is 'set off' or 'serve as a foil'.

But what I mean is the 写作手法 '衬托', is there such word in English?

Thank you!

3

衬= to match; to complement

托= to lift; to support

衬托:(v) to complement and enhance ;(n) a complemental contrast

~

set off
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/set%20off

show up by contrast

2

'foil' is very thin sheets of something, like aluminium foil used in the kitchen.

"The sense of "one who enhances another by contrast" (1580s) is from the practice of backing a gem with metal foil to make it shine more brilliantly."

So 'a foil' as a backdrop makes something appear better.

An ugly woman serves as a foil to a pretty girl.

In literature, a foil is a character who contrasts and accentuates another.

As a way of writing it just means separate some text from the main body of the text by some means such as more indent, italics, put in a text box or frame, bullets or numbering, different font or font colour or highlighting in order to make it stand out.

You should set this clause/paragraph off from the rest of the text.

A related word is feuilleton: 文艺​专栏, 小品​文章

(originally) part of a French newspaper devoted to light literature and criticism (usually at the bottom of a page and separated by a rule), 1845, from French feuilleton (18c.), literally "a leaflet (added to a newspaper)," diminutive of feuille "leaf," from Latin folium.

I also found: 衬映: set off by contrast.

  • Foil had this meaning because jewelers would put a small shiny foil backing on clear gem stones (not aluminum foil but special foil for the purpose). – Colin McLarty Nov 20 '16 at 0:57
  • Colin, I think you'll find that in 1580, when this sense of foil evolved, nobody had ever even heard of aluminium! – Gangosa Nov 20 '16 at 1:27

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