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says,-“God is my rock and my shield.”—“Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” Metaphors are so common, that in conversation we often use them, without being sensible of their occurrence. We say that a man has a sour or a sweet temper; a cold or a warm heart; that he is worn out with fatigue, or weighed down by care.
We say the air is keen or soft; and we cannot easily find words more expressive, to convey these ideas.
A METAPHOR resemblance puts in place
An epithet or metaphor drawn from nature ennobles art; an epithet or metaphor drawn from art degrades nature.
Metaphorical expression may
be sometimes used with grace, where a regular simile would be intolerable: but there are situations so overwhelming, as not to admit even the slightest metaphor.
Metaphorical language is proper when a man struggles to bear with dignity or decency, a misfortune however great: the struggle agitates and animates the mind.
A SIMILE differs from a metaphor in this respect, the latter is joined with the subject it is introduced to illustrate; the former is separately expressed with some term to prepare us for the comparison; as when Job says,—“My days are passed away as the swift ships, as the eagle that hasteth to
Similes are not expected to be minutely exact; it is enough if the general resemblance is striking.
An ALLEGORY consists in a succession of metaphors, and is introduced to enliven a subject with allusive images, as for example :“ The Lord is my shepherd, therefore can I lack nothing ; he shall feed me in a green pasture, and lead me forth beside the waters of comfort :
yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for thou art with me, thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.”
An ALLEGORY metaphors extends,
FABLES and PARABLES come under the head of allegories. In fables, words and actions are attributed to beasts, and even inanimate objects, for the sake of conveying instruction. The most ancient is
the fable of the Bramble and Trees, related by Jotham to the inhabitants of Shechem, and recorded in the book of Judges. Parables are short narratives, intended to convey, by a striking description, some moral lessons.
The most beautiful are the parables spoken by our Saviour, of the Sower, the Prodigal Son, and the Good Samaritan.
HYPERBOLE conveys an exaggerated idea of an object. It is applied to subjects, the nature of which exceeds common bounds. As for example :-“ Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death