The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

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In The Importance of Being Earnest, identify uses of hyperbole.

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Hyperbole is essentially an overstatement or exaggeration of the truth, and it is often used in the service of comedy. When the play begins, Algernon is playing the piano and his butler, Lane, comments that he didn't think it would be polite to listen. Algernon claims that he doesn't "play accurately—any one can play accurately." He claims that he plays with "wonderful expression," but it is absolutely not true that anyone can play accurately; most people, in fact, cannot play the piano accurately. This is an example of hyperbole.

Shortly thereafter, Algernon asks Lane, "Why is it that at a bachelor's establishment the servants invariably drink the champagne?" He is attempting to blame Lane and any other servants for drinking the champagne at his house because he does not want to take responsibility for consuming such a large quantity as eight bottles and a pint. He does this by suggesting that servants of bachelors always drink their employers' champagne. Of course they do not; in fact, I...

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