What is metaphorPin

12 Types of Metaphor with Examples | Metaphor Vs Simile

Metaphor Definition

Metaphor is a figure of speech where we compare two unrelated or different things. These two things must have one thing in common. In simile we use as, so, like, but in metaphor, we do not use these words.

For example

  • Our soldiers are as brave as lion. (simile)
  • Our soldiers are the lion. (metaphor)

What is a metaphor?

A metaphor is a figure of speech that directly compares two different things without any use of “like” or “as.” It can be a word, phrase, sentence, or paragraph. A metaphor can make an idea easier to understand by comparing it with something more familiar and concrete.

Metaphors are often used in literature and poetry because they help paint a picture for the reader’s imagination. They have been used throughout history as well as today to help us better understand abstract concepts like love, death, beauty, and courage.


We cannot avoid metaphors. Here are examples of metaphors,

  1. Life is a dream.
  2. She is a shining star.
  3. Time is money.
  4. Julia is a pion.
  5. Her heart is a rock.
  6. All the world is a stage.
  7. Her eyes were fireflies.
  8. Her voice is music to his ears. (This shows that her voice makes him feel happy)
  9.  Laughter is the best medicine.
  10. Camel is the ship of the desert.
  11. Life is not a bed of roses.
  12. The classroom was a zoo.
  13. Their home was the prison.
  14. She was sleeping beauty.
  15. The pizza is a fire.

Let’s see some different examples:

What does the metaphor Butterflies in stomach mean? It means someone is feeling nervous.

Example: Tom got butterflies in his stomach before making the speech.

Metaphor Examples in Science

Metaphors are a powerful way to express ideas. They can even be used to help describe complex scientific or mathematical theories, which can otherwise seem difficult to understand and follow.

Here are some examples of metaphors that have been used in various fields of study and see how they illustrate the topic at hand.

In mathematics: “Every time you take a step forward on your journey through infinity; you go around one full circle.”

In physics: “To throw an apple off the top of a building with enough force so it hits the ground is like throwing a ball up in the air.”

In chemistry: “A molecule is like two people holding hands.”

Metaphor Examples for Kids

  1. Mary invited a sea of troubles.
  2. My friend is a giraffe.
  3. Her cat’s eyes were green fireballs.
  4. You’re the apple of my eye.
  5. The moon is like a mirror that reflects light from the sun.
  6. This classroom is a zoo.
  7. She was a shining star.
  8. The children are angels.
  9. Your teacher is a bear.
  10. Tina is a chicken.
metaphor examples for kidsPin
metaphor examples for kids

20 Sentences of Metaphor

  1. The sun was shining brightly, but the trees were still bare.
  2. His words cut deep into my heart.
  3. She had a sharp tongue and could easily cut someone down to size.
  4. I tried to put on a happy face for her sake, but it felt like the weight of the world was on my shoulders.
  5. He’s been through so much in his life that he has developed an iron will to keep going no matter what life throws at him.
  6. He is always grumbling about how much work he has to do, his life is one big chore list.
  7. She looked at me with those piercing eyes that could see straight through my soul and make me feel naked even though she didn’t touch me at all.
  8. They were so close together that you couldn’t tell where one ended and the other began; their lives seemed intertwined for eternity.
  9. The sun is a beautiful, warm candle in the sky.
  10. My boss is an angry bear who needs to be tamed before he hurts someone.
  11. The world is a stage, and we are all actors.
  12. The news was the dagger for him.
  13. I’m a lost puppy without you.
  14. We are two peas in a pod.
  15. He’s a tall skyscraper.
  16. He was drowning in debt.
  17. The sun was a beautiful flower in the sky.
  18. Time flies when you’re having fun.
  19. My life is a puzzle with missing pieces.
  20. We got lost in the conversation.

In metaphor, quality is missing. Metaphors are indirect comparisons.

simile vs metaphorPin
simile vs metaphor

Metaphor Vs Simile

A comparison between two different things.A comparison between two different things.
Similes use connecting words as like and ‘as’Metaphors do not use connecting words.
To point a picture and give an example.To point a picture for the reader.
Similes make explicit comparisonsMetaphors make implicit comparison
Bob is a brave lion.
The pizza is as hot as a fire.
Life is like a dream.
She is like an angel.
Life is like a box of chocolates.  
Bob is a lion.
The pizza is a fire.
Life is a dream.
She is an angel.
Life is a box of chocolates.
Metaphor Vs Simile
12 Types of Metaphor with ExamplesPin
12 Types of Metaphor with Examples

Types of Metaphors

There are many types of metaphors to point the metaphorical pictures. Summary is;

  1. Primary Metaphor
  2. Complex Metaphor
  3. Mixed Metaphor
  4. Dead Metaphor
  5. Creative Metaphor
  6. Extended Metaphor
  7. Conceptual Metaphor
  8. Implied Metaphor
  9. Root Metaphor
  10. Visual Metaphor
  11. Organizational Metaphor
  12. Submerged Metaphor

1 – Primary Metaphor

The most basic type of metaphor is the primary metaphor. Primary metaphors are used in daily life speech and studies. For example,

  • Life is a dream

In this metaphor, two different things are compared, so the meaning is very clear.

2 – Complex Metaphor

Grouping of primary metaphors is called complex metaphors. In these metaphors, we compare two or more things. For example,

  • Her eyes caught the melody and reflected it in radiance.

This sentence is composed of two metaphors (i) eyes caught the melody, and (ii) eyes reflected the melody in radiance.

3 – Mixed Metaphor

Mixed metaphors are distant for comedy. They intentionally combine two metaphors that are inappropriate/silly.


After getting this job, I am flying high and into the valleys of happiness.

4 – Dead Metaphor

A dead metaphor is a metaphor that has the spellbound fundamental image of its meaning due to repetitive and popular use.


The thread flew through the eye of the needle.

5 – Creative Metaphor

Creative metaphor is an original difference that calls plan to itself as a figure of speech.


She is a shining star.

6 – Extended Metaphor

The extended metaphor is a comparison between two different things that carry throughout the cycle of sentences in a paragraph of a poem.


Dickson days,

Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul,

and sings the tune — what the words,

and never stops at all,

7 – Conceptual Metaphor

In conceptual metaphor one though is implicit in conditions of a different.


Argument is war.

8 – Implied Metaphor

An implied metaphor is a metaphor that compares two different things without bringing up one of them.


My dad is my rock.

9 – Root Metaphor

A root metaphor is directly interrelated to people, culture, characteristics, and perception of life.


Life is a journey.

10 – Visual Metaphor

A visual metaphor is an image that the viewer is meant to understand as a symbol for something else. It is also the representation of a person, place, thing, or thought by a visual image.

11 – Organizational Metaphor

Organizational metaphor is a comparison used to define the fundamental aspects of an institute and describe its method of operation.


12 – Submerged Metaphor

Submerged metaphor is a type of metaphor in which one of the terms is indirect fairly than acknowledged explicitly.


Metaphors in songs

“I am Titanium” by David Guetta & Sia Tribute

I’m bullet proof, nothing to lose
Fire away, fire away
Ricochet, you take your aim
Fire away, fire away
You shoot me down, but I won’t fall
I am titanium
You shoot me down, but I won’t fall
I am Titanium

Metaphors in Poetry

Example No.1

“The Sun Rising” by John Donne

She is all states, and all prices, I
Nothing else is. Prices do but play us,
Compared to this,
All honour’s mimic, all wealth alchemy.

Example No.2

“The Road Not Taken” by Robert Forest

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
An be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth,

Metaphors are used in many types of poetry.

Metaphors in Literature

Metaphors are used in all types of literature. Metaphor poem is composed of complex images and feelings to readers. These are some examples of metaphorical literature.

Example No.1

“Paradise Lost, Book 1” by John Milton

“Invoke thy aid to my adventurous song,
That with no middle flight intends to soar.
Above the Aonian Mount”

This is a good metaphorical by John Milton from his book Paradise Lost wherein he has compared his poetry to love.

Example No.2

“The Sun Rising” by John Donne

“Busy old fool, unruly sun,
Why dost thou thus,
Through windows, and through
curtains call on us”

A poem by John Donne. He is a metaphysical poet and famous for his use of metaphors.

Example No.3

“Romeo & Juliet” by William Shakespeare

“But soft, what light through yonder window breaks?
It is the east, and Juliet is the sun”

In this paragraph, William Shakespeare used metaphors to describe peoples in an unexpected way.

Example No.4

“When Thou Hath Done” by John Donne

“When thou weep’st, unkindly kind,
My life’s blood doth decay
When a tear falls,
That thou false which it bore,
Here lies a she-sun and a he-moon there,
All woman shall adore us,
and some men.” 

This stanza gives a special character to Donne’s metaphysical poetry.

Example No.5

“The Storm” by Kate Chopin
“Her mouth was a fountain of delight.”

Purpose & Function of Metaphors

From the above explanations, we can easily infer the function and purpose of metaphors, both in our daily speech and literature.

Metaphors are a way of thinking, allows listeners and readers to understand the idea or thought. And, even though metaphors are amplification they are only amplified to paint a clear picture.

Further Reading

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  1. Superb collection of figures of speech indeed.Thanks.

    .Keep on posting your valuable content.

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