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Metaphor 1 - Examples of Metaphor
"Each blade of grass was like a bayonet." Is this a simile or a metaphor?

Metaphor 1 - Examples of Metaphor

‘I am feeling blue’ is a sentence you might hear from a person who is feeling sad. Similarly, ‘He is the black sheep of the family’ describes a person who is different from others. These expressions have one thing in common: a situation is equated to a real thing, although it is not actually that thing. Such expressions are known as metaphors.

A metaphor is one among the many figures of speech used in English. A figure of speech can be a phrase, a word, a repetition of words, a special arrangement of words or even a phrase. Whatever form it takes it may not mean exactly what the words mean.

A metaphor is one kind of figure of speech where a phrase or a word is used on an action or object - not literally but in a manner to signify similarity or resemblance. A metaphor is a powerful tool that writers or speakers employ to drive home their message in a much more resourceful and memorable way.

You may have heard Indian cricket commentator, Ravi Shastri, describe a player’s shot in these words:

‘Virat Kohli took the ball on the rise and smashed it. The ball WAS A BULLET as it reached the boundary in no time.’

You will notice that the words in capitals are a metaphor because they describe the speed of the ball, equating it to the speed of a bullet. This comparison by the use of the metaphor gives the reader or listener a more graphic description of the shot than just saying ‘he hit a six.’

Metaphors help to make English a funny, witty and inventive language and it will be to your advantage to learn all about metaphors to help you write and speak better. Run through this quiz and feast on the banquet of metaphors.

1.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
If you are going to look after my cat you will have to be as gentle as a lamb.
Her hair was a flowing golden river streaming down her shoulders.
The job interview was a rope ladder dropped from heaven.
The wheels of justice turn slowly.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 4 metaphor, the delay in the courts is equated to a slow turning wheel. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
2.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
The officers had golden parachutes to land to safety after the establishment went bankrupt.
They say that scars are the road map to the soul.
The batsmen were raining fours and sixes in the last five overs.
Mustaq's beard is as thorny as a rose bush.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 3 metaphor, the batsmen were scoring many fours and sixes and this is equated to raining. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
3.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
Parvati let such beautiful pearls of wisdom slip from her mouth once in a while.
After finding a bag full of jewels, the tramp's eyes looked as bright as the moon.
The test was a walk in the park.
Words are the weapons with which we wound.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 3 metaphor, the test was so easy that it is equated to a walk in the park. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
4.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
She was fairly certain that life was a fashion show.
Prakash arrived at the grocery store with an army of children.
His cotton candy words did not appeal to her taste.
The ship capsized and sunk like a stone.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 2 metaphor, the number of children is equated to an army signifying many children. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
5.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
The path of resentment is easier to travel than the road to forgiveness.
When Aamir Khan got on to stage, the girls went into a frenzy.
The pirate's evil eyes are as black as coal.
The job fair was a circus.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 4 metaphor, the job selection process is equated to a circus. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
6.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
When Kaun Banega Crorepati came on TV, the boys were glued in their seats.
Each blade of grass was a tiny bayonet pointed firmly at our bare feet.
Captivated by the sight of Sachin Tendulkar, the young boys' eyes gleamed like pearls.
The teacher planted the seeds of wisdom.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 1 metaphor, the boys liked the TV programme and did not get up from their seats and this is equated to being glued to the seats. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
7.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
Ramesh is a worm for what he did to Shelia.
Laughter is the music of the soul.
The computer in the classroom was an old dinosaur.
The cover of my new book is as soft as velvet.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 3 metaphor, the computer was so old that it is equated to a dinosaur. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
8.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
I was lost in a sea of nameless faces.
Her eyes were fireflies.
Waves of spam emails flooded his inbox.
Navneet can swim like a fish.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 3 metaphor, receiving spam emails in the inbox is equated to waves signifying that too many emails are being received. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
9.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
As he never ate much, his arms were as thin as a rake.
The detective listened to her tales with a wooden face.
The typical teenage boy's room is a disaster area.
We are all shadows on the wall of time.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 2 metaphor, the detective's face is equated to a face of wood, meaning the detective listened without any expression. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
10.
Which of the four sentences is not a metaphor?
In capitalism, money is the life blood of society and charity is the soul.
Beating my little sister at chess is like taking candy from a baby.
Sachin pleaded for her forgiveness but Gracy's heart was cold iron.
Sir C V Raman always had a taste for the fruit of knowledge.
This is a simile. Remember similes use 'like' or 'as' to make the comparison whereas metaphors equate the subject to something else. For instance, in answer 3 metaphor, Gracy's rejection of Sachin's plea is equated to cold iron. Try to understand the meanings of the other metaphors
Author:  V T Narendra

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