Spencer Lam
Spencer Lam
英文補習名師,港大一級榮譽,多年英文補習經驗,歷年來曾教授超過1000名學生,學生遍及各大名校,由初中至成人英語皆可因材施教,獲《TVB》、《Now TV》、《經濟一週》、《晴報》、《親子王》、《經濟日報》等專訪



Metaphor(暗喻)是以另一種相似事物來描述一種事物;不會運用 like 或 as 等字眼,而是會將事件/對象A描述為事物B。

根據Cambridge dictionary的解釋:metaphor is a expression, often found in literature, that describes a person or object by referring to something that is considered to have similar characteristics to that person or object.


Night owl(夜貓): someone who goes to bed very late
Early bird(早起身嘅人): someone who gets up early in the morning
I was so scared by the movie that I froze with fear.(嚇到呆咗)s




Metaphors About Emotions

Metaphors can be useful in expressing the extent or type of feelings a person is experiencing.

  • His words cut deeper than a knife. Words don’t materialize into sharp objects. In this metaphor, someone has said something hurtful to another.
  • I feel the stench of failure coming on. Failure isn’t fun but it doesn’t smell. So, when this metaphor is used, it means one of life’s disappointments is on the way.
  • I’m drowning in a sea of grief. Here, grief is so overwhelming that the person feels helpless, like they’re being pulled underwater.
  • I’m feeling blue. Until we become like the little girl in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory, none of us are likely to turn as blue as a blueberry. This metaphor means someone is sad.
  • She’s going through a rollercoaster of emotions. Our emotions can’t take a ride on a rollercoaster. This metaphor simply means the person’s going through a lot of different moods.

Metaphors Describing Behavior

Metaphors are often used to describe behavior.

  • I think he’s about to fade off to sleep. Fortunately, none of us fade into thin air when we fall asleep. This expression simply means that someone has drifted into a state of slumber.
  • He really flared up my temper. When someone flares up your temper, flames don’t spew out of your body, you’re just deeply angry.
  • He reeks of infidelity. When this is said about a cheating partner, it doesn’t mean there’s an actual odor. This metaphor is saying it’s obvious the person is a liar and a cheat.
  • She was fishing for compliments. The woman isn’t literally casting a lure to hook compliments out of the ocean. Rather, it’s a dead metaphor used to signify a desire for accolades.
  • She has such a bubbly personality. No one’s personality can bubble up like a glass of champagne. This metaphor is used to signify someone who’s especially cheerful.

Metaphors About Love and Heartbreak

Conversations about love and loss are often filled with metaphors.

  • He broke my heart. Your heart isn’t literally broken; you’re just feeling hurt and sad.
  • He is the apple of my eye. There is, of course, no apple in someone’s eye. The apple is someone held dear.
  • It’s raining men. “Hallelujah!,” sang The Weather Girls. No, men don’t literally pour from the sky. This simply indicates that a lucky lady has a lot of male suitors.
  • Love is fire. Of course, love isn’t literally fire. But, for someone seeking to explain a love that is both passionate and dangerous, this can be an effective metaphor.
  • You light up my life. Of course, no one can provide physical light. This expression famously used by singer Debby Boone is simply saying that someone brings them joy.

Metaphors About Setting

Sometimes a metaphor is the best way to convey what the setting is like.

  • The curtain of night fell upon us. The evening did not develop into a velvet curtain. It just got dark outside. Simple words are used to paint a colorful picture of how quickly night arrived.
  • The moonlight sparkled brighter than a gypsy. The moonlight didn’t transform into a colorful gypsy. Rather, it lit up the night with sparkling radiance.
  • The sun is a creature of habit. The sun, of course, is not a creature at all. However, this metaphor conveys the pattern and repetition of sunrise and sunset.
  • Warmth blanketed the area. While temperature can’t be thrown over an area the way a blanket can, it can settle in and stay in place over a widespread area.
  • The cold air pierced his skin. While cold can’t actually cut through a person’s skin, this metaphor describes the biting feel of extremely cold temperatures.

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