A simile is something which is used regularly in both written text and spoken language in the English language. But what exactly is a simile and how is it used? We are going to take a look at the answers to both these questions over the course of this article. We will also take a look at many examples of similes being used in both the form of day to day conversation and as a literary device.
A simile is a form of figurative language in which a comparison is made between two things which have something in common, using the words like or as. The simile is used to describe an item, situation, emotion or action by comparing it to something else in order to make the statement more creative and artistic.
When used as a literary device, a simile can give a more emotional and complex feel to a piece of writing and enables the author to better convey the description by using this type of figure of speech as a comparison.
Examples of Simile in Spoken Language
When taking part in or listening to everyday conversations in English, you are likely to come across the use of simile many times. With this being by far the most common form of figurative language, it is used in many situations. We are now going to take a look at how a simile is used during spoken conversation.
- They fight like cat and mouse.
- He is as brave as a lion.
- I am as busy as a bee.
- She is as happy as a clam.
- My grandmother is as blind as a bat.
- This child is as light as a feather.
- He is as bold as brass.
- I feel as fresh as a daisy.
- Her attitude is as cool as a cucumber.
- The whole family is as common as muck.
- He is a fighter who is as hard as nails.
- My cousin is as tall as a skyscraper.
- It was as hot as hell in Dubai.
- I was so scared that I was as white as a sheet.
- My daughter is as sweet as sugar.
- He played in the mud until he was as black as coal.
- I spent all morning cleaning and my home was as clean as a whistle.
- He trains a lot so he is as strong as an ox.
- My father is as nutty as a fruit cake.
- It went so slowly it was like watching paint dry.
- It is like watching grass grow it is so boring.
- That is going to go down like a lead balloon.
- That couple are as different as day and night.
- I was so tired that I slept like a baby.
- In my ball gown at the wedding, I stood out like a sore thumb.
- My new jeans fit like a glove.
- This explanation is about as clear as mud.
- He is as dead as a doornail.
- You will never catch her, she is as slippery as an eel.
- The light was as bright as the sun.
- I love getting into bed, I feel as snug as a bug in a rug.
Examples of Simile in Literature
When writing, authors will often use a simile to make a more vivid description of something. We will now take a look at some examples of times that a simile has been used as a literary device, whether that be in stories, song, poetry or otherwise.
- ‘My love is like a red rose.’ is an example of a simile used in the piece ‘A red red rose’ written by John Burns.
- In the play Romeo and Juliet, written by William Shakespeare, we can see an example of a simile when we read the line ‘is love tender? It pricks just like a thorn.‘
- In the song ‘It’s my life’ by Bon Jovi, we can see an example of simile in the line ‘my life is like an open highway.‘
- ‘I’ve been working like a dog.’ is an example of a simile from the song A hard day’s night written by the Beatles.
- ‘You are as cold as ice‘ is a simile from the song ‘cold as ice’ by Foreigner.
- In the sun also rises written by Ernest Hemingway we can see an example of simile in the line ‘the cafe is like a battleship all stripped for war.’
- In two years before the mast written by Richard Henry Dana Junior, we see an example of a simile in the line ‘she is like a ladies watch, say the pirates.’
- ‘The air smelled as sharp as newly chopped wood.’ This is an example of a simile from the piece Chocolate by Joanne Harris.
- F Scott Fitzgerald uses simile in the novel The Great Gatsby, we see this in the line ‘the afternoon sky came through the window like the blue Mediterranean sea.’
- In the grapes of wrath written by John Steinbeck, there is a good example of simile in the sentence ‘the green hills are as round and as soft as breasts.‘
- Once again in The grapes of wrath, we see another simile example when we read the line ‘her eyes were like the eyes of a statue.’
- In the adventures of the three gables written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, we can see an example of simile when we read the line ‘she came in like a huge awkward chicken.’
- Another example of simile found in literature can be found in the poem by William Wordsworth in the line ‘I wandered as lonely as a cloud.’
In this article, we have looked more closely at the use of simile in both written and spoken English. We have learnt that this is a form of figurative language which makes a comparison between two things using the words like or as. This type of comparison adds a more vivid flair to a description and is a popular form of literary device due to it’s ability to convey a more emotional description of something.