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Similes 01
If someone is very proud you might say "He is as proud as a peacock" and this is an example of a simile.

Similes 01

A simile (pronounced si mil ee) compares two unlike things and the sentence usually contains "like" or "as". Similes can really enhance English and even bring a smile (nearly a simile!) to the face.

How often do you use similes? Have you ever heard that someone "smells like roses"? That is an example of a simile, often used ironically for someone who is not innocent and therefore does NOT "smell like roses". Colours are often compared to natural objects with which everyone is familiar, which involves employing a simile: something might be "as blue as the sky" or "as green as grass". The "as...as...." construction is typical for similes and helps us to picture whatever is being described.

Whereas your goal with some similes might be to help someone understand exactly what you mean, at other times you will want to invent a creative simile, one with which your reader will not already be familiar. In such cases you'll want to avoid clichés like "as brittle as glass", "as playful as a puppy" or "as hot as an oven" in order to come up with something arresting: "he leapt about like a new lamb on a fresh April morning", for instance. This simile builds on the familiar (leaping like a lamb), but adds extra detail to avoid sounding stale.

Test your knowledge of similes with this quiz.

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1.
Complete the following popular simile.
I was very tired last night; I slept like .......
a cat
a dog
a log
a twig
Lots of similes are very commonly used comparisons. You wouldn't have much of a chance trying to wake up a log, would you?
2.
Complete the following popular simile.
He swims like .......
a baby
a fish
a monster
an eel
Similes usually contain "like" or "as"
3.
Complete the following popular simile.
The young man was as proud as .......
a cat
a dog
a fox
a peacock
When you see a peacock you will see what is meant!
4.
Complete the following popular simile.
The kitten was trembling like .......
a branch
a leaf
a piece of paper
a tissue
Watch out for "like" or "as" when spotting similes
5.
Complete the following popular simile.
The puppies were as mad as .......
cats
dogs
hatters
penguins
A similar simile is "As mad as a March hare"
6.
Complete the following popular simile.
The professor was as wise as .......
a fox
a hare
an eel
an owl
Using similes will make your writing interesting
7.
Complete the following popular simile.
The confident leader was as bold as .......
brass
bronze
gold
silver
Use similes to make your writing and speaking vivid. Similes can age, however. What do you think is meant by "as bold as brass"?
8.
Complete the following popular simile.
She is as sly as .......
a cat
a dog
a fox
a peacock
Some similes contain "as" and then "as" again to make a comparison
9.
Complete the following popular simile.
The brothers are as alike as .......
two beans
two peas
two potatoes
two tomatoes
"Like two peas in a pod" is a common simile
10.
Complete the following popular simile.
The room was as cold as .......
ice
marble
snow
stone
This simile suggests that the room was very cold

 

Author:  Sue Daish

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