Is the phrase "honest air" an example of metaphor or personification?

Expert Answers
literaturenerd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The correct answer regarding the literary device used in the phrase "honest air" is personification.

Personification is the giving of human characteristics to non-human/non-living things.

A metaphor is a comparison between two things not using the words "like" or "as" in the comparison. If one uses "like" or "as" then the comparison would be considered a simile.

Given that air is not a human, air simply cannot be honest. Only humans can be honest. Example of personification, so that you are able to identify the devices more easily are:

whispering trees, screaming tides, laughing grasses, waving trees.

Examples of metaphors would be:

Life is a highway (comparison of life and a highway).

She is a pig (comparison between a woman/girl and a pig).

To change the phrase "honest air" into a metaphor, one would do the following: the air is honest Abe.

timmonious | Student

"Honest air" is an example of personification, because it gives the air the quality of being honest, which is a human characteristic.