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Identify figure of speech (simile, metaphor, personification, metonymy, synecdoche,...

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maikhanh23487 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted June 16, 2009 at 10:12 AM via web

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Identify figure of speech (simile, metaphor, personification, metonymy, synecdoche, hyperbole, litotes, irony, euphemism) and interpret its meaning:

1. Out of this working and dying  they are bound to get less and less

2. The headlines leaped noisily before my eyes.

3. on some bright tomorrow they will come to the end of endurance.

4. Don't substitute the good for the best.

5. He never got to be president, but he was the biggest man.

6. The ship plows the sea.

7. They were driven cattle on the high road near. Wanting to turn into the mist of stones.

 

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amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted June 16, 2009 at 9:36 PM (Answer #1)

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1. Irony.  The statement makes the opposite conclusion than what is expected.  You expect to see "more" after working so hard, but here they can expect "less and less".

2.  Personification.  Headlines are not living creatures.  They can not leap in any capacity, much less in a noisy manner in the hopes of attracting the attention of the reader.

3. I'm not sure on this one.

4. I'm not sure on this one.

5.  Euphemism, perhaps?  The definition of this term is the use of an indirect and mild or inoffensive word or expression to replace one that is coarse, unpleasant, offensive or blunt.  In this example it seems that the speaker is avoiding the word "failure" and substituting "biggest man" where the person in question did not succeed in making his goal as president.

6.  Hyperbole.  This is the use of extreme exaggeration.  The ship's movement and action on the sea is exaggerated as if it were, in a sense, a plow.  The ship does not have the power to turn over the water as the plow does to the land.  On a clear day, the ship is in control, but the sea is really the boss.

7. Metaphor.  The comparison is being made between the "they" and the "cattle".  It also personifies the cattle a bit, since it gives them "person-like qualities" of wanting something...in the this case, to be like the "mist of stones".

Synecdoche is where you use a part to represent the whole.  I don't see any examples of that here.  For instance, "Don't let your ears hate my mouth for the news it brings".  The people in this example are not just a pair of ears and a mouth, but those parts are used to represent the whole being.

Check out the links below for more help and understanding.  Good Luck!!

 

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hero5 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted August 14, 2009 at 9:08 AM (Answer #2)

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3. on some bright tomorrow they will come to the end of endurance. I would say this is irony. A bright tomorrow indicates a positive end. The end of endurance sounds defeated.

4. Don't substitute the good for the best. This doesn't seem to fit in as figurative language. To me it's almost cliche.

 

6. The ship plows the sea. This seems more a metaphor because ships do not plow. To describe a ship as plowing is making it something it is not.

7. They were driven cattle on the high road near. Wanting to turn into the mist of stones. A mist of stones seems to also be a metaphor as stones do not create mist so the stones are becoming mist, I imagine because of their color and perhaps texture.

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