In "The Most Dangerous Game," what are some examples of imagery?
"The Most Dangerous Game" uses many types of imagery, including simile, metaphor, and personification.
Imagery is “the use of language to represent actions, persons, objects, and ideas descriptively” and includes sensory language, which are descriptions that appeal to the five senses. Authors use imagery to help the reader picture the setting, story, and the story's events.
An example of imagery is this simile from the beginning of the story, where the author describes how dark the night is.
"Nor four yards," admitted Rainsford. "Ugh! It's like moist black velvet."
This is a simile because it compares two things using “like” or “as." In this case, the night is compared to moist black velvet. This is important because Rainsford cannot see the island. This image appeals to how much humans value our sense of sight. It makes things mysterious and ominous.
A metaphor, by contrast, is “a figure of speech in which a word or phrase is applied to a person, idea, or object to which it is not literally applicable.” A metaphor says that something is something, rather than saying something is like something. A metaphor used in the story compares the yacht’s lights to fireflies.
The lights of the yacht became faint and ever-vanishing fireflies; then they were blotted out entirely by the night.
The lights are not literally fireflies. They are small blinking lights that look like fireflies from a distance. Again, this image appeals to our sense of sight. It increases suspense because the yacht is leaving.
Personification compares something nonliving to a human. It is “a figure of speech in which abstractions, animals, ideas, and inanimate objects are endowed with human form, character, traits, or sensibilities.” The sea is personified.
Ten minutes of determined effort brought another sound to his ears—the most welcome he had ever heard—the muttering and growling of the sea breaking on a rocky shore.
People growl and mutter, not oceans. Yet this image appeals to our sense of hearing. We can imagine the way the ocean sounded. It also relates to Rainsford’s state of mind; he is frightened because he falls off the boat into the ocean and this island has a bad reputation.