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new to others. And again, a comparison which is quite allowable now, may, in the advance of knowledge, fall under the objection just mentioned. In either case, however, the rule will hold good.

135. A Comparison is sometimes introduced purposely to lessen or depress an object. This is effected by associating the principal subjects with something low or despicable; thus, Milton compares the fallen angels to a herd of goats:

The overthrown he rais'd, and, as a herd
of goats or timorous flocks together throng'd,
Drove them before him thunderstruck, pursued
With terrors and with furies to the bounds
And crystal wall of heav'n, which opening wide,
Roll'd inward, and a spacious gap disclos'd
Into the wasteful deep.

EXERCISES. 136. Neatly transcribe the following Examples, underlining the words exemplifying the Figure, and subjoining to each Example a few remarks tending to show the propriety of the Simile. 1. The path of the just is as the shining light.

Remarks. 2. Is not my word like as a fire, saith the Lord.

3. Still o'er those scenes my memory wakes,

And fondly broods with miser care ;
Time but the impression stronger makes,
As streams their channels deeper wear.

4. Pleasures are like poppies spread,

You seize the flower - its bloom is shed.
5. Give me the line, that ploughs its stately course,

Like a proud swan, conquering the stream by force.

6. As from some rocky cliff the shepherd sees

Clust'ring in heaps on heaps the driving bees,
Rolling and black’ning, swarms succeeding swarms,
With deeper murmurs and more hoarse alarms;
Dusky they spread a close embodied crowd,
And o'er the vale descends the living cloud.
So, from the tents and ships, a length’ning train
Spreads o'er the beach, and wide o'ershades the plain;
Along the region runs a deafʼning sound;
Beneath their footsteps groans the trembling ground.




137. A METAPHOR is founded on the resemblance which one object bears to another; and differs from a simile only in being expressed in a shorter form (generally in one word), without the signs of comparison like or as; thus, " Thy word is a lamp to my feet.” In this example, lamp is used metaphorically to affirm that the divine word instructs men in the course of conduct to be pursued, just as a lamp directs them in the dark how to choose their footsteps. 138. When I say,

“ Man is like a wolf to man,” I use a simile ; but when I say, “ Man is a wolf,” I employ a metaphor. When an author, therefore, designates “man as a wolf,he must describe only such of the qualities and appearances of the wolf as are suitable to his subject. Caution is necessary to know at what point the resemblance ceases. Thus, were he to say, “ Man is a wolf to man that mur


ders and devours his fellows," he would be extending the metaphor too far. A wolf may be said to kill and devour," but, not to murder his fellows.

139. There are four sources of Metaphors :

1st. When the resemblance lies between Rational and Irrational animals; thus, “ Our Saviour is styled the lamb of God.” “ Cicero styles Piso the vulture of the province.”

2nd. When the resemblance lies between Rational Beings and Inanimate objects; thus, “ Jesus is frequently styled a vine, a door," &c. “Chatham

“ was designated the bulwark of the state.”

3rd. When the resemblance lies between Irra. tional animals and Inanimate objects; as, “ His horses have become the Charybdis (vortex) of his estate.”

4th. When the resemblance lies between one Inanimate object and another; as,

“ Her hand encircled wore a bracelet starred with gems.” Age is the sunset of life.”

140. RULES FOR THE APPLICATION OF METAPHORS. Rule 1. a. As a Metaphor is founded on the resemblance between two objects, that resem blance must be so evident, that what is affirmed of the one may be equally applicable to the other; thus, the Psalmist says, “ The Lord is my rock and my fortress, my deliverer, my God, my strength, in whom I will trust.”

b. REMARKS. -- The reader, acquainted with the state of Eastern countries when the Psalmist uttered these words, will readily perceive the appositeness of the metaphors employed in this example. In a country infested by numerous banditti, what so suggestive of security as a rock, defended by a fortress ? - or what so consolatory as the conviction that should a sudden attack be made, a deliverer was at hand, his own God, his strength? So, metaphorically, in a moral and spiritual sense, the man whose hopes, and aims, and principles, are built on God, possesses a rock and fortress against every marauding spiritual adversary that would at. tempt to disturb his peace, or rob him of his heavenly inheritance.

c. According to the preceding rule, metaphors that are forced or far-fetched must be avoided. Thus, were a poet to say, tenacious paste of solid milk,instead of the simple word “ cheese,” he would be introducing a metaphor that was forced and inelegant.

d. As Metaphors are intended to illustrate a subject, they must not be taken from the more abstruse branches of the arts and sciences with which few persons may be acquainted; on the contrary, they should be derived from the most frequent occurrences of art or nature, or from the civil transactions and customs of mankind.

141. Rule 2. a. Metaphors should be suited to the nature of the subject of which we treat. Some are allowable, nay beautiful, in poetry, but which are inadmissible in prose; some may be graceful in orations, which would be very improper in historical or philosophical composition. Care, therefore, is requisite to employ only those metaphors which are neither too lively nor too elevated for subject; that we may neither attempt, by means of them, to force the subject into a degree of elevation which is not consistent with it, nor, on the other hand, allow it to sink below its proper dignity. In a serious discourse, therefore, to speak of “ thrusting religion down our throats," degrades the subject by the meanness of the metaphor.

b. This Rule is also frequently violated by combining objects which have no correspondence. Thus, Shakspeare says, “ He cannot buckle his distempered cause within the belt of rule.” It is evident that there can be no resemblance between a distempered cause and any body that can be confined within a belt.

142. Rule 3. a. In constructing a metaphor, the writer should confine himself to the simplest expressions, and employ such words only as are literally applicable to the imagined nature of his subject. He must also carefully avoid intermixing plain and figurative language when describing the same object; otherwise, one part of the description will be understood literally and the other metaphorically.

Violation. — “A stubborn and unconquerable flame creeps in his veins, and drinks the stream of life.” The writer has been comparing a fever to a flame, and ought not to have employed any words that were not applicable to the metaphor. A flame may be supposed to creep in a man's veins, but can never be said to drink a stream.

b. The preceding rule requires consistency of language in the expression of a metaphor; thus, if we speak of the passions as being inflamed, we must not at the same time speak of rooting them out, but of extinguishing them; if we speak of a rooted prejudice, it must not be subdued or ertinguished, but eradicated.

143. Rule 4. a. In describing the same subject, we must avoid joining together different or mixed metaphors.

Violations.-Addison, speaking of the frailty of our nature, says, “ There is not a single view of human nature, which is not sufficient to extinguish

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