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Figures of speech. Cao Wen College of Foreign Languages and literature , NWNU. simile. Simile is the comparison of two distinctly unlike things using such words as seems to be, resemble, as, like or as if. He eats like a pig. The old man’s hair is as white as snow.

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figures of speech

Figures of speech

Cao Wen

College of Foreign Languages and literature, NWNU

  • Simile is the comparison of two distinctly unlike things using such words as seems to be, resemble, as, like or as if.
  • He eats like a pig.
  • The old man’s hair is as white as snow.
  • The girl is gay as a lark.
  • I wondered lonely as a cloud.
  • His body is as tough as leather.
  • She spoke hurriedly, as if her heart had leaped into her throat at the boy’s words.
  • Talk like a book
  • Drink like a fish
  • Smoke like a chimney
  • As proud as a peacock
  • As timid as a mouse
  • As black as pitch
  • As blind as a bat
  • As brave as a lion
  • As busy as a bee
  • As poor as a church mouse
  • As straight as an arrow
  • As sly as a fox
  • As faithful as a dog
  • As slow as a tortoise
  • As high as a kite
  • As quiet as a lamb
  • As sharp as a knife
  • As light as a feather
  • As hungry as a wolf
  • As black as a crow
  • As motionless as a statue
  • As white as snow
  • Metaphor is an implied comparison or a condensed simile for it omits the word as or like.
  • You are a tulip.
  • The politician is a snake in the grass.
  • Yaoming is the soul of the basketball team.
  • The guy is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
antithesis contrast
  • It means opposition, or contrast of ideas or words in a balanced or parallel construction.
  • Action, not words.
  • To err is human, to forgive, divine.
  • Give me liberty, or give me death!
  • Out of sight, out of mind.
  • Penny wise, pound foolish.
antithesis contrast1
  • Adversity reveals genius, fortune conceals it.
  • A time to be born and a time to die
  • A time to plant and a time to uproot
  • A time to kill and a time to heal
  • A time to tear down and a time to build
  • A time to weep and a time to laugh
repetition reduplication
  • Repetition refers to the repeated use of the same word, phrase or structure in a sentence, paragraph, or passage. A good use of repetition renders a sense of beauty as well as addition of emphasis.
  • You are a great leader of a great nation.
  • The only thing we fear is fear itself.
  • The only thing that is not changing is changing.
  • Climax refers to arrangement of words,phrases or clauses in an order of ascending power. Often the last emphatic word in one phrase or clause is repeated as the first emphatic word of the next.
  • I came, I saw, I conquered.
  • Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested.
  • For God, for America, and for Yale.
  • Religion, credit and the eye are not to be touched.
  • I love classical music, literature and hot dogs.
  • You manage a business, stocks, bonds, people. And now you can manage your hair.
  • Parallelism refers to the use of the same or similar word, phrase, or a clause in a grammatically balanced structure.
  • They waited at the bus stop, talking and laughing.
  • One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.
  • Metonymy is a figure of speech in which one word or phrase is substituted for another with which it is closely associated.
  • The pen is mightier than the sword.
  • His purse would not allow him that luxury.
  • Can you give me your hand?
  • Great minds think alike.
  • In the final match England has won.
  • Hester is good at her needle.
  • China beat Japan 2 to 1 in the finals.
  • The smiling year stands for spring.
  • Give us this day our daily bread.
  • England expects every man to do his duty.
  • The moon is smiling, the sun is very shy.
  • Youth is hot and bold, age is weak and cold.
  • This time fate was smiling to him.
  • The sun kissed the green fields.
  • The old man is hard of hearing.
  • I am afraid you have misrepresented the facts.
  • To be pregnant: to be in the family way, to be expecting, to be in a funny situation
  • To die: to pass away; to breath one’s last
  • I must be cruel only to be kind.
  • I hate you because I love you.
  • Tearful smile
  • More haste, less speed
hyperbole overstatement
  • The chair weighs a ton.
  • Thanks a million.
  • I have a sea of trouble.
  • The day seems a long year.
  • We have not seen each other for ages.
understatement litotes
  • It’s no laughing matter.
  • He is no bad painter.
  • The young man is no fool.
  • I was not a little surprised at the good news.
  • Seven days without water made one week.
  • His days are numbered.
  • The dishonest lawyer lies still.
  • Like son, like father.
  • Not all cars are created equal.
  • Great minds think otherwise.
  • To marry or not to marry, that’s the question.
transferred epithet
Transferred epithet
  • We spent an anxious night.
  • He closed his busy life at the age of 80.
  • The president has a busy schedule.
  • We live to eat, not eat to live.
  • He was an angel on the surface, but at heart a knave.
  • Judicious praise is to children what the sun is to flower.
  • Food is to our body what books are to our mind.
  • Man must change in a changing world.
  • Money often unmakes the men who make it.
  • What’s done cannot be undone.