Authors use figurative language to create a special effect or feeling. Figurative language helps the reader understand the text better and better imagine the events and the characters.
- Figure of speech
- The meaning of each word separately does not tell the reader what the figure of speech means. An idiom is an example of a figure of speech.
Example: Birds of a feather flock together. (People who are similar hang out together.)
- Compares two unlike things using the words “like” or “as”
Example: Her hair was like the dark cloud. (Her hair was very dark.)
- Compares two unlike things to say one thing is another
Example: The woman was a rock. (The woman was tough and strong.)
- Gives human characters to nonhuman things
Example: The wind hummed a gentle tune. (The sound of the wind was like music.)
- An obvious exaggeration that is not meant to be taken seriously
Example: He was so tired he could sleep for a century. (He could sleep for a long time.)
- Makes a comparison between two things that are alike in some way
Example: She was as important to him as water to a thirsty man in the desert.
- A reference made to something that is not directly mentioned in the passage. Usually a well-known mythical character, a literary character, a book, or something from popular culture
Denise was the Good Samaritan who helped a stranded passenger (reference to a term from the Bible)