Figurative Language PP

Figurative Language
Figuring it Out
Figurative and Literal Language
Literal: words function exactly as defined
The boy’s room was messy.
The left fielder dropped the baseball.
Figurative: You have to figure it out
The boy’s room was a pigsty.
The left fielder has butterfingers.
^These are figures of speech.
A comparison of two different things
using the word “like” or “as.”
Telephone wires hung like a musical score
Compares telephone wires to a musical score
Those faces, sour as vinegar;
Compares facial expressions to the taste of vinegar
“Like” and “as” don’t always make similes.
A comparison must be made.
Not Simile: I washed the dishes as she dried
Simile: The dishes were as clean as the
inside of a full bottle of soap.
In the first example, no comparison is made.
In the second, the cleanliness of the dishes
is compared to the inside of a soap bottle.
A comparison of two different things
without using the word “like” or “as.”
Flowers of thought blossom while reading
Compares thinking to blossoming flowers
Drink of sweet courage until drunk of it
Compares courage to a liquid drink
She was my lute, by her I sang
Compares the girl to a lute
Giving human traits to objects or ideas.
The stars are hiding now
Gives stars the ability to hide.
Or trees that whisper in some far, small town
Gives trees the ability to whisper.
A tree may wear a nest of robins in her hair
Gives the tree hair and the ability to wear things.
Exaggerating to express a strong feeling
I will love you until the end of time.
It is unlikely that the speaker will live that long.
My dad would kill me if he knew about this.
Dad probably wouldn’t actually kill his own child.
My book bag weighs a million pounds.
The bag isn’t even close to a million pounds.
Expression with less strength than expected.
The opposite of hyperbole.
The guillotine will give you a bad hair day.
The results will be much worse than bad hair.
Kidnapping your host is considered rude.
This is a serious crime much worse than rudeness.
On a separate sheet of paper…
1. I will figurative language examples on the
2. You will write whether each is an example
of simile, metaphor, personification,
hyperbole, or understatement.
3. You can use your notes.
Let it be forgotten as a flower is forgotten,
This is a simile because it compares a thing
that should be forgotten to a flower.
Your hand was honey-comb to heal,
Your voice a web to bind.
This is a metaphor because the subject’s
hand was compared to honey-comb and
the subject’s voice was compared to a
web. The speaker did not use like or as.
After smashing through the garage door
Alex acknowledge that he may have parked
a little too close to the house.
This is an understatement because Alex
parked more than a little too close.
The brooks laugh louder when I come,
The breezes madder play.
This is personification because the brooks
are given the ability to laugh and the
breezes are given the ability to play.
There are some, like stars, that dwell apart,
In a fellowless firmament;
This is simile because some are compared
to stars using the word like.
And there will I keep you forever,
Yes, forever and a day,
Till the walls shall crumble to ruin,
And molder in dust away!
This is hyperbole because the speaker is
exaggerating how long he will keep the
person. You can’t add a day to forever
without exaggerating.
Freedom weeps, Wrong rules the land, and
waiting Justice sleeps.
This is personification because freedom is
given the ability to weep, wrong is given
the ability to rule, and justice is given the
ability to sleep.
The painted leaves are strewn
Along the winding way.
This is a metaphor because the coloration
of the leaves is compared to paint without
using the word like or as.
Jeff probably should have said “Thanks”
after Vic saved his life.
This is an understatement because if
someone saves another’s life, more
gratitude is expected than the informal
The graveyard of my soul is filled with
flowers, so that I may stroll in meditation,
at my ease.
This is a metaphor because the speaker
compares his soul to a graveyard without
using the word like or as.
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