Home  »  A Dictionary of Similes  »  George Meredith

Frank J. Wilstach, comp. A Dictionary of Similes. 1916.

George Meredith

Amiable as the surface of parchment.

As anxious as a maid
To show a decent dress.

Bare as hop-stakes in November’s mists.

Bellow like a rascal trooper strung up for the cat.

Blissful as a leap to daylight out of a nightmare.

Blushing like the dogwood crimson in October.

Calm as a statue of Memnon in prostrate Egypt.

Cheering as a suburban London Sunday’s promenade.

Chill as aconite.

Chill as a dull face frowning on a song.

Circled … like flight of doves.

Clamouring like a brazen bell.

Clean as a red-hot poker.

Clean as the bright from the black.

Clear as a race course.

Clear as widowed sky.

Cold as a fish.

Cold as a mountain in its star-pitched tent.

Constant in intercommunication as are the sun and earth.

He told me that he thought one’s country like one’s wife: you were born in the first, and married to the second, and had to learn all about them afterwards,—ay, and make the best of them.

Cracked as a cocoa-nut bowled by a monkey.

Craved the trumpets eager note,
As the bridled earth the spring.

A cry as wild as any coming of madness.

Dead as last year’s clothes in a fashionable fine lady’s wardrobe.

Delicately, like the tap of a fingernail on a vase.

Different as the two hemispheres in the time of Columbus.

Dim as the shades in the angry shower.

Direct as the arrow of logic.

Distant as the horizon sail.

Drives like rain to the roots.

Drooped like a yacht with idle sails struck by a sudden blast, that dips them in the salt.

Drooping like crystals in the gulf of time.

Dull as a tract.

Dumb as pillar-posts.

Dwarfed … like starved plants under Greenland skies.

Eager as a cry for life.

Eager for it as a hound.

In earnest as a mouse in a trap.

Enthusiasm, like a bottle rid of the cork.

Evident as light in dark.

Faithful as the hands of a clock to the springs.

Fast as windy flames devour.

Firm as a pillar.

Hands firm as driven stakes.

Fits like a kid glove.

Flung up like a fortress lifted by powder.

Floundered, like a silly creature chasing a marsh-lamp.

Like a smoke melted thinner than air,
That the vacancy doth disown.

Fragrant as the frosted blossom of a May night.

Fresh as the orchard apple.

Seen no more,
Gone, like the wind that raised the wave,
The spent wave on the shore.

Gossipin’ about like a cracked bell-clapper.

Gossip must often have been likened to the winged insects bearing pollen to the flowers; it fertilizes many a vacuous reverie.

Grave as an eye dwelling on blood.

Green as jealousy.

Hang like a tail.

Heaving … like the sea in the background of a marine piece at the theatre.

Hoary as the glacier’s head
Faced to the moon.

Holds him fast
As a night-flag round the mast.

Her arms the master hold,
As on wounds the scarf winds tight.

Horrible as viper-bitten bodies.

Ignorant as a raw kitchen wench.

Illuminated him as the burning taper lights up consecrated plate.

Inferences are like shadows on the wall—they are thrown from an object, and are monstrous distortions of it.

Knowing it as the moon her traditional influence upon the tides.

Light as the flying seed-ball.

Light as a bubble that flies from the tub,
Whisked by the laundry-wife out of her suds.

Loud as cavalry to the charge.

Manageable as chess-pieces.

Meek as a dove.

Meek as gruel.

Mild as an evening heaven around Hesper bright.

Misty as a shape in a dream.

Natural as dunghill steam.

Neat as a postman’s knock.

Noisy as at a fair.

Obedient as a puppet.

Open as a plate.

Open-mouthed as a young child
Wondering with a mind at fault.

Painful orderliness, like a city procession under the conduct of the police.

Pale as the sister of death.

Patiently as an old worn horse.

Plain … as a rudimentary sum in arithmetic.

Plump as a melon under a glass.

Pounced like a falcon.

Puffed like a swimmer in the breakers.

Pushed, like a fish to its native sea.

Quick as barrels popping at a bird.

Quick as torrents run.

Quick as wings.

Rapidly as drummer-sticks.

Red as murder.

Red as the British Army.

Relentless as an invalid.

Remote and minute as the chief scene of our infancy.

More repelling than an abyss.

Resembles, as bottles bottles.

Rosy as a victorious candidate.

Run like fire in summer furze.

Runs like the prey of the forest.

Rushed out upon the wayfarers like ambushed bandits.

Sacred as an unvoiced prayer.

Sad as the last line of a brave romance.

Scant as winter underwood.

Scatter … as if they had been balloons in a wind.

Scattered … like loose spray before the wind.

Secure as the firmament.

Serviceable as his inkstand.

Sharp as a sickle is the edge of shade and shine.

Sharp as the enchanter’s sword.

Shattered like stormy spray.

Shifty as a huckster’s opening deal
For bargain under smoothest market face.

Shrank as at a prick of steel.

Shrank—like parchment at the touch of flame.

Shuddered as at a swift cleaving of cold steel.

Shy as the squirrel.

Shyer than the forest doe
Twinkling slim through branches green.

Sick as a Dover packet-boat.

Silent as the evening sky.

Silly as an owlish roysterer’s glazed stare at the young aurora.

Snigger, like a yokel’s smile.

Solemn as a parson’s clerk.

Sounded like a felon’s heart in skeleton ribs.

Splendid as a general’s plume at the gallop.

Stood like a sentinel under inspection.

Stared, as one who would command
Sight of what has filled his ear.

Like the sea-rejected thing
Sea-sucked white.

Stately as a palm-tree standing before the moon.

Stiff as oak-leaves after frost.

Stiff as logwood.

Fall still as oak-leaves after frost.

Stop progress, like a block in the pit entrance to a theater.

Stout as bergs of Arctic ice.

Fly straight as the emissary eagle back to Jove.

Straight as the flight of the dove.

Straight,—like a webfoot to water.

Streaming like a flag of battle.

Streamed like curtain-rents
Fluttered by a wind.

Supple as the Scythian’s bow.

Sure as the date on a bill.

Surely as musical ears are pained by a discord.

Surely as the heavens are mirrored in the quiet seas.

Sweet as Eden.

Sweet as victory half-revealed.

Swift as a blush in the cheeks of seventeen.

Tender, like a mother’s dream of her child.

Thick as feathers.

Thin as a weasel.

Thin as mist.

Thin as the shell of a sound.

Thundering like ramping hosts of warrior horse.

Tight like teeth.

Tossing like field-flowers in Spring.

Tumbling about in her head like a world in disruption.

Uncaressable as puppets.

Uncorrected as outstretched swine.

Unremonstrant as a fallen tree.

Vain … as to attempt to erase what
Time has written with the Judgment Blood.

Vanish like a view caught out of darkness by lightning.

Venice is like a melancholy face of a former beauty who has ceased to rouge, or wipe away traces of her old arts.

Visible like evanescent grave-lights.

A wail, as of a babe new-born.

Wandering, like a leaf off the tree.

Wayward as the swallow overhead at set of sun.

Yellow as jaundice.

Yielded, like bruised limb to leech.

Young as old Homer’s song is young.