A figure of speech is a word or phrase that possesses a separate meaning from its literal definition. It is designed to make a comparison and to create a dramatic effect.
Figures of speech include idioms, metaphors, similes, pun, rhetoric questions, etc. In this unit, we will learn about similes.
A simile is a figure of speech involving the comparison of one thing with another thing of a different kind, used to make the description more emphatic or vivid.
  • Similes are used to express thoughts/feelings/words in a unique way, which differs from the ordinary tone of speech.
  • It adds to the emotional/expressional intensity to make the reading more interesting.
  • It emphasizes the meaning of the thought.
  • It gives better clarity.
  • It adds a beautiful tone to the text.
  • Thereby makes it more attractive to the reader.
Similes are used to bring about a connection between two different things, by using one to express another.
1. As busy as a bee: Someone who is always busy doing something.
 Since the exams are fast approaching, Jack is as busy as a bee.
2. Like peas in a pod: Someone who stays together always.
Kamila and her sister are like peas in a pod.
3. As innocent as a lamb: Someone naive, gullible or faultless.
Everyone loves Rosy because she is as innocent as a lamb.
A simile establishes a connection between two things using the terms "like" or "as".
Usually, the two compared objects do not have anything common (for instance, in the above example, the dress and feather do not have any connection, nor does Rosy and the lamb!) It is used to bring about the dramatic nature of the thoughts expressed. Similes add creativity, humour and depth to the text.
1. Chris was as brave as a lion. (Intensifies the braveness of Chris, when compared with a lion)
2. The kids fought like cats and dogs. (Creates depth in meaning, to show how bad the fight was)
3. My brother is strong as an ox, nobody can fight with him. (Brings about dramatic meaning, as one imagines an ox's strength)
4. The science exhibition show was like watching grass grow. (Humorously explains that the show was very slow)