The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe

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What are two metaphors and two similes in "The Tell-Tale Heart"?

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Metaphors are authorial tools to highlight similarities between two things that cannot be literally compared. Similes are a subset of metaphors that specifically use "like" or "as" to make that comparison.

Consider the following phrase, which contains both a metaphor and a simile:

His room was as black as pitch with the thick darkness . . .

The metaphor is "thick darkness." Darkness can't literally be thick, as could a soup or pudding, but by referencing thickness, Poe emphasizes how impenetrable the black is. The simile is "black as pitch," comparing the darkness of the night with the darkness of sticky tar.

Simple simile and metaphor like the ones above are common across all writing, but authors such as Poe use both tools with sophistication, building mood, character, and plot. Here is another sentence containing both a simile and a metaphor:

When I had waited a long time, very patiently, without hearing him lie down, I resolved to open a little—a very, very little crevice in the lantern....

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 630 words.)

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