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Let me start off with a few definitions, so that you can do it yourself in the future.
A metaphor is a figure of speech that is used to make a comparison between two people, things, animals, or places. A simile is a figure of speech that makes a comparison, showing similarities between two different things. Personification is a figure of speech where inanimate objects are given life-like qualities.
Here are some examples:
-The sky was as blue as the water; at one point I could not see where one ended and the other began. It was all one.
-The sea is a faithful and persistent friend that always visits no matter what you do, say or think.
-The skiff rests gently on the sand waiting to touch the awaited sea.
-The sun says good night, but before he goes, he offer the glow of his warm to the sand and the sea.
-The waves kiss the sand and the sand sparkles in the sunlight.
You will recognize a simile (take care spelling simile as there is no extra i) when you see a comparison using the word "like" or a description of something using as....as when those two things would not normally compare to each other. For example, you could say:
- The evening was warm and soothing like my comfy pillow after a long day at school.
- The sea was lapping at the shore like a cat laps up its milk.
We would not usually associate a warm evening with a comfy pillow and because the word like has been used it makes that a simile, and of course we would not usually compare the sea lapping at the shore as the tide comes in to a cat lapping his milk.
A metaphor is also a comparison but is more difficult to recognize but when you read that an object, event or in this case, a beach scene, for example is something that you know it is definitely not, then you know it is a metaphor.
- The sky swallowed the sun as evening fell.
We know that the sky obviously did not swallow the sun and we know that the evening did not fall so we have a metaphor in both instances.
Personification is when human characteristics are given to inanimate objects, animals or even thoughts and ideas.
- The sleepy sun said his "good night" and slowly tucked himself up in a cloak of clouds.
Referring to the sun using "his" instead of "its" infers human qualities and the fact that "he" was sleepy and tucked himself up completes the personification. You will notice another figure of speech - alliteration (when the first letter/ sound of a word is repeated)- in the words cloak of clouds (the repeated c is alliteration.)
Hyperbole is also a good figure of speech when exaggeration is used to convey a message.
- Sitting on the beach, I was millions of miles from home and felt that I could stay here forever.
We know that it is an exaggeration to say he was millions of miles away as he could not have traveled millions of miles in a small boat! Staying there "forever" is also hyperbole as forever is a very long, long time and he is going to want to go home at some point!
Using symbols to represent a feeling is also a good way to use figurative language.
- The beach is a special place for me. I am free here with no chores and no homework. Freedom!
The beach is symbolic of freedom in this instance.
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