More than 100 examples of metaphors [explicit and implicit] | (2023)

This post contains over 100 examples of metaphors in sentence form. To get the most out of these examples, notice how different the two things being compared are (that's the point of writing good metaphors) and how the two things simplify to "one thing is another" from Example 48 onwards.

to use: The different being compared, also called the vehicle, has been underlined in all examples for clarity. Second, comments on examples are enclosed in square brackets.

More resources on metaphors:

  • Learnwrite explicit and implicit metaphors, with categorizations like in this post
  • Consider examples of simpler metaphors? To viewExamples of metaphors for children, with a simple explanation
  • Since all three are similar to each other, learnWhat is the difference between metaphor, simile and analogy?
  • To loadvarious metaphor exercises

In explicit metaphors both things being compared are clearly stated and we need not infer anything. Here are examples of explicit metaphors with and withoutPerhapsverbs.

Write sentences like in newspapers and books.

step by step process. Little grammar. Practical examples.

1.1 Explicit metaphors with the verb "to be".

1. What Emma Raducanu did at the 2021 US Open (tennis) by winning the women's singles title as an unseeded player iswhat people are doing in kenyaSteal meat, hold your breath, a pride of lions. Both seem impossible, but they were achieved anyway.

2. The financial measures announced by the government to mitigate the impact of Covid wereShoot arrows to kill a T-Rex.

3. Regular pay every month and other benefits includedgolden handcuffs that bind people to their workplacesdespite his dislike of the job.

4. Amazon isa 1000 pound gorillaretail

5. In the moments before the results were announced, it was me.a taxpayer who had just received an IRA audit notice: extremely nervous. [Note: some metaphors require explanation. Here,extremely nervousthe comparison had to be made clear.]

6. Compared to the incredible performance of Tesla's stock, it was the performance of every other investment.a financial sauce.

7. my grandfather isbe maddespite his age, because he can crack walnut shells with his teeth.

8. my credits area millstone around my neck, which keeps me hooked to my 9-to-5 job.

9. He wasa sphinxduring the process: petrified and calm.

(Video) Explicit vs. Implicit

10. is political powera fucking drug. Its removal can be painful.

11. How motivated are you to pursue your goal? ANDan itchy or burning sensation?

12. the money ispaper soaked in oil. It burns out faster than you think.

13. Is this feature in your product?a dinosaur, or is it still relevant?

14. They areKaulquappingon your way to building a remarkable company.

15. Showbiz is not an easy industry to navigate. ANDa river full of monsters.

sixteen. my night shift isa cemetery: not a soul in sight, total silence and the occasional howl of stray dogs.

17. journalism isLiterature in Éile. mateo arnold

18. the life isa sum of all your decisions. Albert Camus

19. all life isan experiment. The more experiments you do, the better. Ralph Waldo Emerson

20. the chessboard isthe world; the parts arethe phenomena of the universe; Those are the rules of the gamewhat we call natural laws. Thomas Huxley

21. A business without advertising isblink someone in the dark. You know what you're doing, but the others don't. Steuart Henderson Britt

22. Areanything but sailboats on the river of life, and the money isthe wind. With enough money, you can run anywhere. denis mueller

23. the tears arethe heart's safety valve if too much pressure is applied to it. Alberto Schmidt

24. fame isa pearl for which many dive and few produce. Luisa May Alcott

25. justice istruth in action. . . . Benjamin Disraeli

26. WorldwideThe stage. And all the men and women justplayer. Shakespeare

27. the world isThe stage, but the work is misunderstood. oscar wilde

28. are love lettersthe campaign promises from the heart. Roberto Friedman

29. For the ignorant it's old ageWinter; for scholars isharvest season. Hay Talmud

30. anger isa wind blowing the genie's lamp. Roberto G. Ingersoll

31. Everybody knows what politics isa contact sport. barack obama

32. the wine isbottled poetry. Robert Louis Stevenson

33. poverty isthe mother of crime. Marco Aurel

34. Remember, it's youjust an extra in everyone else's game. Franklin D. Roosevelt

35. laughter isthe shortest distance between two people. Victor Borge

(Video) NeurIPS 2020 Tutorial: Deep Implicit Layers

36. laughter isa sedative without side effects. Arnold H. Glasgow

37. humor isa rubber sword– Allows you to score a point without drawing blood. Mary Hirsch [No explanation, meaning unclear.]

38. Experience:a comb gives you life after losing your hair. judith popa

39. Everyone's work, be it literature, music, image, architecture or anything else, is alwaysa picture of that person. samuel mordomo

40. Our actions make us or harm us; they arethe children of our own works. victor hugo

41. an excuse isthe super glue of life. You can fix almost anything. Lynn Johnston

42. It has been said that it is a pretty a passport. But it is not; ANDfor the visa, and runs out quickly. Julie Burchill [This contains both a simile and a metaphor.]

43. boxing is easyShow business with blood. frank bruno

44. words are naturalthe most powerful drug known to mankind. Rudyard Kipling

Explicit metaphors in the appositive form are essentially a branch ofPerhaps- verb scheme. Some examples:

45. ion role,a bull angry with the ball, is widely recognized as one of the best in the game. [Jonah Lomu is a fierce bull with the ball.]

46. As we climbed, the landscape gave way to a field of dandelion flowers,Ayellow velvet rugmerge with the horizon.

47. Rafael Nadal,a wall on clay courtsHe won an incredible thirteen French Open singles titles.

1.2 Explicit metaphors without verbs "be"

All metaphors can be simplified to "one thing is another" where the two things are unequal. In the following examples, the two different things are simply written in parentheses so that you can easily understand them.

48. HeParasiteWar and destruction have plagued the country for decades, keeping a significant portion of its population below poverty. [War and destruction are plagues.]

49. To befortalezaof a house was finally raided by the secret services. [The house is a fortress.]

50. Heanthilla colony associated with humans. [The colony is an anthill.]

51. HeZugwrackan Olympic campaign ended in another defeat. [The Olympic campaign was a disaster.]

52. Enjoythe sweet dew of sleep. find shakespeareJulius Caesar[Sleep is dew heavy as honey.]

53. The city was covered bya thick layer of snow. [Snow is a thick blanket.]

54. When we finally got a meal after nearly 30 hours, we werea pack of hungry dogs who suddenly see meat. [We are a pack of hungry dogs that suddenly turn to meat.]

55. The campaign workedTitanic: great, but damn. [The campaign was Titanic.]

56. become mediathe judge, jury and witness in this caseprove the defendant's guilt before the trial could begin. [The means in this case are judge, jury, and witness.]

57. TV news has becomea propaganda machine, which some use brilliantly to promote selfish interests. [Television news is a propaganda machine.]

58. Greg turned arounda pigwhen he sees food [Greg is a pig.]

59. There used to be a trip to Unilevera gateway to leadership in the consumer goods industry. [A stint at Unilever was his entry into a leadership position in the consumer goods industry].

(Video) Implicit Differentiation

60. Initially we thought that Covid would be short-lived, but then we realizedan ice agebegins [The period that Covid will last is the time that the ice age lasted.]

61. "You made mea guinea pigto prove their theories”, accused the son. [The son was a guinea pig.]

62. When he's angry, he looks like one.kettle whistling steam. [His face is a cauldron of hissing steam.]

63. Terthe memory of a wild elephant. [His memory is the memory of a wild elephant.]

64. Some people call economy class on the planeas bovine class. [Economy class is the bovine class.]

sixty-five. Since 2005, the best clay court (tennis) players have often handily won their clay court matches until they found one.Icebergbirth name. [Nadal is a mountain. We could have used a bet here as well.]

66. commitmenta good umbrella, Buta bad roof. James Russell Lowell [Commitments are a good umbrella, but a bad roof.]

67. Global warming can bea fever that runs through the landin an attempt to fight a deadly infection known asa wise man. Rick Bayan [Global warming is a fever the Earth has.]

68. Your singing reminds mea car going down a hill with the brake on. Thomas Beecham [His song of it is the sound of a car going down a hill with the brakes on.]

2. Examples of implicit metaphors

In the implied metaphors only one of the two things compared is clearly mentioned; the other must be inferred from the specific words in the sentence. In the following examples, what is inferred is mentioned between parentheses, the first two being detailed and the others summarized.

In implied metaphors, a single word usually indicates a comparison of two different things. These words can be verbs, adjectives or nouns. Examples of each are shown below.

2.1 Verbs expressing implicit metaphors

69. The managergreen lightmy sugestion. [This equates to: The CEO is a traffic light that gave my proposal the green light. Does this sound familiar?Perhapsverb now?]

70. O vulcaosneezesAshes and rocks, signaling more to come. [This is equivalent to: The volcano is a person who spits out ash and rocks, indicating more to come.]

71. AboutI was bleedingmoney in various markets in its struggle to gain market share. [Uber is a living being.]

72. Some whiskey capsuleswashedall my pain [Whiskey is a wave.]

73. EUflushedthe data for my research work from various sources. [I am a scavenger.]

74. Johncaughthe broke through the defense and scored the much needed goal. [John is a hurricane or a super fast train.]

75. the journalistsGoes intowhen the famous actor left the airport. [Journalists are a bird like an eagle.]

76. The commanderroaredInstructions to men joining the night shift. [The commander is a policeman.]

77. the travel industrybleedingMillions of jobs lost due to the sharp drop in travel during the Covid period. [The travel industry is a blood vessel or a person.]

78. the firedevouredmore than a dozen tents in a short time. [Fire is a hungry person.]

79. The companyflownvery close to the sun and finally with blinds. [The entity is the Greek mythological figure Icarus.]

80. After decades of war, poverty and diseasetrackedthe country. [Poverty and disease are a person or an animal.]

81. COVID 19flateconomies around the world. [Covid is a storm or an earthquake.]

82. The warriorvanquishedthe enemy. [Enemies are flies.]

83. With this move, the chess playerasphyxiatedyour opponent's chance of getting a draw. [The chess player was a murderer.]

(Video) Mapping Digital Worlds to Understand Our Present and Future w/ Nadia Asparouhova

84. Johninsidewhen you see sloppy work. [John is a volcano.]

85. Trolling on social media before every electionmake warabout his political opponents. [Social media is a battleground.]

86. Esahighpassionate. [love is ocean]

2.2 Adjectives that express implicit metaphors

87. show me that1.000 wattssmile. [The smile is a 1000-watt light bulb.]

88. They arewhathair continues to market hair care products to this day. [The hair is silk.]

89. To beinjuredThe ego will take time to recover. [The ego is a part of the body.]

90. you can't expect anygaggedreport fairly to the media. [The media is an animal.]

91. The commentator, in hisforensicGame analysis called the player just a trivial player. [Game analysis is the scientific analysis of a crime.]

92. JuanesencyclopedicThe memory earned him several prizes in trivia contests. [Memory is an encyclopedia.]

93. To befruitfulreally innovative ideas come to mind. [The spirit is the earth.]

94. HeGladiatorThe race for the prestigious election left a trail of bitterness and violence. [The competition is a fight between gladiators.]

95. Everyone in the office is suspicious of the manager.volcanicTemperament. [The temper is a volcano.]

2.3 Nouns that express implicit metaphors

96. After sunset, you'll find antisocial elements in thefurtivelylooking for your next goal. [Antisocial elements are wild animals.]

97. John Isner serviupelletswhich gives you lots of free points. [John Isner is a weapon.]

98. I had afront row seatat Toyota and watched some top executives there. [Toyota is an amphitheater.]

99. The company had ablack eyewhile trying to defend its shady record on user privacy. [The company is a single person.]

100. He hasesin your veins [Your veins are tubes of ice.]

101. you are on ita gold mine. [The thing (e.g. curios) you are sitting on is a gold mine.]

102. When he returned to see his owner after two days, the dog broke down in adance. [The dog is a human.]

103. Global events triggered abutcher'son Asian stock exchanges. [Asian stock exchanges have been a battleground.]

104. At midnightassaultedWe put the cake in the refrigerator. [We were commandos or attackers.]

105. The incident created a networkfirestorm. [The incident was a spark.]

106. The payment page on the website asks for all the details including email id with every payment. The website appears to bejurassic period. [The spot is a prehistoric creature.]

107. There wasa somaamong the participants during the tea break. [Participants were bees.]

108. Even if you get lost in this jungleGoogleI won't be able to find you [Google is a person or company search.]


What are the 20 examples of metaphor? ›

Other examples of common metaphors are “night owl”, “cold feet”, “beat a dead horse”, “early bird”, “couch potato”, “eyes were fireflies”, “apple of my eye”, “heart of stone”, “heart of a lion”, “roller coaster of emotions”, and “heart of gold.”

What is an example of an implicit metaphor? ›

An implied metaphor is a type of metaphor that compares two unlike things without mentioning one of them. For example, “Elise finally lured Adam into her web.” In this line, we know what Elise is being compared to a spider, but it isn't expressly stated.

What are the 7 deep metaphors? ›

According to the Zaltmans, there are seven deep metaphors: balance, journey, transformation/change, container, connection, resource, and control.

What are 3 famous metaphors? ›

Famous metaphors
  • “The Big Bang.” ...
  • “All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players. ...
  • “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” ...
  • “I am the good shepherd, … and I lay down my life for the sheep.” ...
  • “All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree.” ...
  • “Chaos is a friend of mine.”

What are 5 good metaphors? ›

Here are the most common metaphors used in everyday life:
  • Life is a race and we never realise that we are running towards nothing!
  • He is the light of my life.
  • For this whole year, this room has become my prison.
  • Love is a fine wine!
  • My heart's a stereo and it beats for you!
  • She is happy as a clam.

What are the 8 metaphors? ›

In his book, Images of Organization, Gareth Morgan lays out eight metaphors for an organization: machines, organisms, brains, cultural systems, political systems, psychic prisons, instruments of domination, and flux and transformation.

What are the 5 types of metaphors? ›

There are five types of metaphors:
  • Standard metaphor.
  • Implied metaphor.
  • Visual metaphor.
  • Extended metaphor.
  • Dead metaphor.

What are examples of implicit? ›

In contrast, the adjective implicit describes something that has been implied—meaning it has been suggested or hinted at but not actually directly stated or expressed. For example, saying We had an implicit agreement means that the agreement was implied but never actually stated or written down.

What does implicit metaphor mean? ›

What is an implied metaphor? An implied metaphor compares two, unlike things without identifying one of them. A direct metaphor has two parts; the tenor (the initial idea) and the vehicle (the idea being compared to), whereas an implied metaphor, does not contain the tenor.

What is an example of an implicit message? ›

For example, a restaurant might hang photos of celebrity diners and offer a list of notable visitors on its website. The implicit message is that the celebrities enjoyed the restaurant and would recommend it to others.

What is a metaphor Grade 9? ›

A metaphor is a figure of speech that is used to make a comparison, but in a way different from a simile. Instead, it makes the description of an object look as if it was literally true. In other words, it can be said that a metaphor is an implied comparison.

What is metaphor give two examples? ›

Examples of dead metaphors include: “raining cats and dogs,” “throw the baby out with the bathwater,” and “heart of gold.” With a good, living metaphor, you get that fun moment of thinking about what it would look like if Elvis were actually singing to a hound dog (for example).

What is a metaphor in Harry Potter? ›

Metaphor. “Mrs. Dursley was thin and blonde and had nearly twice the usual amount of neck, which came in very useful as she spent so much of her time craning over garden fences, spying on the neighbors.”

What is a metaphor 6th grade? ›

A metaphor is a comparison which is not literally true. It suggests what something is like by comparing it with something else with similar characteristics. For example: 'My brother' is a piglet is a metaphor.

What are emotional metaphors? ›

Al1 emotion metaphors have the same basic structure: they liken a certain psychological state (feeling) to a certain physiological state (sensation) or to another material phenomenon.

What are some deep metaphors? ›

Some examples of metaphors for life include:
  • "Life is a song; we each get to write our own lyrics."
  • "Life is a puzzle; you can only see the picture when you put all the pieces together."
  • "Life is a garden; with care and love you can cultivate beautiful flowers."
Feb 14, 2022

What is a creative metaphor? ›

A creative metaphor is an original comparison that calls attention to itself as a figure of speech. Also known as a poetic metaphor, literary metaphor, novel metaphor, and unconventional metaphor. Contrast with conventional metaphor and dead metaphor.

What is an overused metaphor? ›

Dead metaphors are metaphors that have been so overused that they've lost their figurative qualities. For example: When he returned from vacation, memos, documents and vouchers were strewn across his desk. He took off his coat and dove in.

What is a metaphor for happy? ›

To show you are really happy with a metaphor, you could say something like 'I'm on cloud nine' or 'I'm over the moon! ' Even if, like most of us, you haven't been to the moon, you can still use that idiom.

What is an example of a metaphor in literature? ›

It is the East, and Juliet is the sun!” Upon seeing Juliet alight upon her balcony, Romeo uses metaphor to compare her visage to the sun.

What are some positive metaphors? ›

You can use metaphors for who you are or what you do, as a simple way to shape your experience, or to help others make sense of what you do.
Metaphors for You
  • I'm a survivor.
  • I'm a lover.
  • I'm a fighter.
  • I'm a healer.
  • I'm a teddy bear.
  • I'm a lion.
  • I'm a bull.
  • I'm a peaceful warrior.

How many types of metaphors are there? ›

Similes, hyperbole, antithesis, idioms, and metonymy are all types of metaphors as they use the practice of comparisons between two 'things.

What is a metaphor for homelessness? ›

Abstract. Like sociologists who use “class” and “stratification”, and physicists who use “black hole”, researchers who investigate homelessness and housing issues use metaphors. To name just a few, we hear of “sliding” into homelessness, “pathways”, “revolving doors”, “exit points” and homeless and housing “careers”.

How do you identify a metaphor examples? ›

See if the sentence uses a word such as “as” or “like” as a preposition. That is, it is comparing things explicitly. If it compares things without using prepositions such as “like” or “as” it is a metaphor. See what the metaphor is comparing.

What is a metaphor for a butterfly? ›

The butterfly metaphor means that a small change can give rise to a big tidal wave. And you can't predict where or how. Seemingly unimportant acts, or omissions, can have great and unforeseen consequences. Here is a quote from Ben Franklin that details the cascading effects of a seemingly inconsequential oversight.

What type of word is implicit? ›

adjective. There's an implicit trust between them.

What are 2 synonyms for implicit? ›

synonyms for implicit
  • constant.
  • contained.
  • definite.
  • implied.
  • latent.
  • steadfast.
  • tacit.
  • unshakable.

What does implicit message mean? ›

An implicit message is a message that is implied but not directly stated. In contrast, an explicit message is a direct message that is clearly stated without any ambiguity.

What is explicit and implicit? ›

Something is implicit when it is implied but not directly stated. Something is explicit when it is directly stated and leaves no room for uncertainty.

What are the five metaphors of teaching? ›

Abstract Briefly explores the use of metaphors to improve understanding, the role of metaphors in education, and five metaphors related to the roles, responsibilities and relationships of teachers: teachers as parents, gardeners, prophets, pearl oysters and physicians.

Is a dead metaphor a metaphor? ›

A dead metaphor (also called a frozen metaphor or historical metaphor) is a figure of speech that readers or listeners are so familiar with that it ceases to surprise or conjure an image in their minds, thereby becoming ineffective as an actual metaphor.

What is metaphor with Example Class 10? ›

One thing is compared to another in a metaphor. It compares and symbolises the two objects, not that they are identical, but for the sake of analogy or symbolism. For example: a Love is a battlefield.

What is a metaphor Class 8? ›

Metaphor - When you compare two unlike or different things or ideas, it is known as a metaphor. It is an informal or implied simile in which the words 'like' 'as' are avoided. For example, He is like a Giant - Simile and He is a Giant - Metaphor.

What is a metaphor Grade 5? ›

Metaphors are basically a figure of speech that individuals use to compare things that aren't alike but do have one or more similarities. Unlike similes which describe two things directly (e.g. brave as a lion), metaphors' comparison is indirect and is usually stated as "something is something else."

What is 5 example of simile and metaphor? ›

Simile: Rapunzel's hair was as soft as clouds. Simile: Cinderella's slippers were as shiny as the sun. Metaphor: The snow is a white blanket. Metaphor: The calm lake was a mirror about what was to come.

What are deep metaphors? ›

Deep metaphors are basic frames or orientations we have toward the world around us. They are “deep” because they are largely unconscious and universal. They are “metaphors” because they recast everything we think about, hear, say, and do.

What 2 words does a metaphor use? ›

  • Simile - Similes use the keywords "like" or "as." Not every sentence that has the word "like" or "as" is a simile. ...
  • Metaphor - Metaphors use the keywords "is" or "are" if they are comparing two nouns in the present tense or "was" or "were" when comparing them in the past tense.
Jul 18, 2022

What is a metaphor Grade 7? ›

A metaphor is a comparison which is not literally true. It suggests what something is like by comparing it with something else with similar characteristics. For example: 'My brother' is a piglet is a metaphor.

What is an example of metaphor Class 9? ›

Examples of Metaphors

My mom has a heart of gold. My friend's sister, Sharon, is a night owl. My hands were icicles because of the cold weather.

What is direct metaphor examples? ›

A direct metaphor is when a comparison is made between two things explicitly and it is easy to detect. Some examples of direct metaphors are: "the world's a stage, and we are all dancers" and "he is a fish out of water."


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