Figurative Language Review English 8 Mrs. Davis Walk Two Moons, 2013
Opening Question: • How important are the words in a story? What impact can word choice have on a story?
Figurative • Definition: using a word (or a group of words) to express a meaning other than the dictionary definition.
Figurative Language • Examples: • I’m feeling a little “under the weather.” • I’m feeling “blue.”
Literal • Definition: using a word for the dictionary or exact definition.
Literal Language • Examples: • I think that I might have the flu. • I am sad.
What is Figurative Language? Figurative Language is language that is used to help make writing more descriptive and lively. This type of language helps to provide vivid imagery for the reader.
Similes Definition: a comparison between two things using the words like or as.
Similes • Lilly is as light as a feather. • The baby is as delicate as a flower. • Danny is sly like a fox.
Metaphors Definition: also a comparison of two things but without using like or as.
Metaphors Examples: • She has a heart of stone. • Life is a winding river. • Her eyes are two stars twinkling in the night.
Personification Definition: a description in which nonhuman objects or animals are given human-like characteristics.
Personification Examples: • The stars smiled in the sky. • The wind whispered an ominous tune through the trees. • The flames of the fire danced in the darkness.
Hyperbole Definition: An obvious or intentional exaggeration (usually for comedic or dramatic effect)
Hyperbole Examples: • Mom! You never let me go out with my friends! • Sally talks a mile a minute. • Danny was so angry that I saw steam coming out of his ears!
What is an Idiom? • Definition: Colorful language that is not literal and is not meant to be taken literally.
More about Idioms • Idioms are expressions that are specific to a particular language. They can be confusing because the phrase as a whole might have nothing to do with the literal meanings of the individual words within the expression. • Example: To “let the cat out of the bag” means to reveal a secret, which today has nothing to do with a cat or a bag, but hundreds of years ago it may have.
Where do idioms come from? • Idioms come from many different sources. Some come from the Bible, slang, ancient fables and myths, famous storytellers and authors, cultural customs, folktales, and proverbs. • Some catch on because they rhyme (snug as a bug in a rug) or because they use alliteration (spick and span)
Raining cats and dogs Because it is raining cats and dogs, our picnic is ruined. • Using the sentence above and any prior knowledge you may have, write in your own words what you think “raining cats and dogs” means.
Raining cats and dogs • Meaning: to rain very heavily; to pour • Origin: This idiom goes back to the middle 1700s in England. Many cats and dogs drowned in floods caused by torrential rainstorms, and their bodies were found in the streets afterwards as if they had fallen from the sky with the rain.
Put all your eggs in one basket Keith used all his savings to start a fishing business, but I told him not to put all his eggs in one basket. • Using the sentence above and any prior knowledge you may have, write in your own words what you think “putting all your eggs in one basket” means.
Put all your eggs in one basket • Meaning: to risk everything you have at once on a single idea or plan • Origin: This idiom goes back to the 1600s when someone realized that if you put all your eggs in one basket and then dropped that basket, all your eggs would be smashed at once.
Chip on your shoulder Avoid Calvin today. He has a real chip on his shoulder. • Using the sentence above and any prior knowledge you may have, write in your own words what you think “chip on your shoulder” means.
Chip on your shoulder • Meaning: to be quarrelsome, aggressive, or rude; to be ready to fight • Origin: In the early 1800s, American boys played a game where one boy would put a chip of wood or stone on his shoulder and dare another boy to knock it off. If the other boy was successful, the two boys would fight.
Get up on the wrong side of the bed Wow, are you grumpy this morning. I can tell you got up on the wrong side of the bed. • Using the sentence above and any prior knowledge you may have, write in your own words what you think “get up on the wrong side of the bed” means.
Get up on the wrong side of the bed • Meaning: to awake with a bad temper or mood, feeling aggravated or grouchy • Origin: In the ancient time of the Romans, the left side of anything was considered evil. In fact, the word “sinister” comes from the Latin word for “left”. They thought bad luck would come to anyone who put his or her left foot down first when getting out of bed.
Mad as a hatter Sean is as mad as a hatter, but he is my most interesting friend. • Using the sentence above and any prior knowledge you may have, write in your own words what you think “mad as a hatter” means.
Mad as a hatter • Meaning: completely crazy, strange, and eccentric • Origin: People who worked in felt-hat factories in the 1800s inhaled fumes of mercury, and, as a result, developed twitches, jumbled their speech, and grew confused. The condition was sometimes mistaken for madness, and is the origin of Lewis Carroll’s Mad Hatter in “Alice in Wonderland.”
Some More… • Green thumb • Gets under my skin • Fish out of water • Skating on thin ice
What is a Cliche? • Definition: overused words or phrases that are no longer effective
Cliché • Many idioms are considered clichés because they have become far overused. When the idioms were new, they were considered fresh and original, but over time have become stale and have lost real meaning. • While it is interesting to think about where idioms come from, you should avoid using them in formal writing. Save them for journals and narrative writing.
The CJH Lunchroom • Write a paragraph about the CJH lunchroom (or your own topic) • See the worksheet for further instructions. • Use your notes!!!!!