Similes
Life is like a box of chocolates.

Similes

Similes are comparing words. 'As nutty as a fruitcake' and 'Life is like a box of chocolates' are similes: an expression used to describe the quality of someone or something by comparing it with something else: often, the meaning of the simile has to be worked out. Similes are easily recognized because they use 'like' or 'as ... as ...'.

So, if 'Life is like a box of chocolates', what is life like? If you've seen the film 'Forrest Gump', you'll probably know the answer. Incidentally, this simile first appeared in the 1994 film 'Forrest Gump'.

Similes can brighten up any piece of writing ~ even more so if the simile is humorous ~ add some to your writing and see if you get extra marks from your English teacher!

Do this 11-plus quiz and see if you can work out what some similes really mean.

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  1. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    The old man was as drunk as a lord.
    It's not only lords who get as drunk as lords
  2. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    His shoes fit like a glove.
    If it fits like a glove, you can wear it
  3. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    The soldier lay on the ground as dead as a door nail.
    Has anyone ever seen a living door nail?
  4. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    Dave is as mad as a hornet.
    If you were to disturb a hornets' nest, you'd soon find out the meaning of this simile: don't do it!
  5. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    Peter is as quiet as a church mouse.
    Is a church mouse quieter than a town mouse?
  6. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    Water and vodka are as different as chalk from cheese.
    They may look alike, but once you've taken a few sips - you'll soon realize the difference!
  7. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    Mike eats like a pig.
    Poor pigs!
  8. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    The teacher's explanation was as clear as mud.
    This simile is often used ironically or sarcastically: Oh, yes! I understood everything; his explanation was as clear as mud
  9. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    She's as blind as a bat.
    This could also mean that she doesn't want to accept things that she should, for example: She's as blind as a bat when it comes to her son's misbehaviour
  10. Choose the best explanation for the simile.
    Sheila is as snug as a bug in a rug in her new house.
    Has anyone asked the bugs how they feel?

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