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

John Webster

Hear him chatter, like a taught starling.

Common as bribery.

Common as sickness.

These factions amongst great men, they are like
Foxes, when their heads are divided,
They carry fire in their tails, and all the country,
About them goes to wreck for’t.

For fashion’s sake, as bawds go to church.

Old friends, like old swords, still are trusted best.

Glories, like glow-worms, afar off shine bright,
But look’d too near have neither heat nor light.

Man, like to Cassia, is proved best being bruised.

Necessary … as rakehells in an army.

Lovers’ oaths are like mariners’ prayers, uttered in extremity; but when the tempest is o’er, and that the vessel leaves tumbling, they fall from protesting to cursing.

This restraint,
Like English mastiffs
That grow fierce with tying,
Makes her too passionately apprehend
Those pleasures she’s kept from.

Scatter like quicksilver.

Short as a lawyer’s beard.

An honest statesman to a prince,
Is like a cedar planted by a spring.
The spring bathes the tree’s roots, the grateful tree,
Rewards it with its shadow.

Treason, like spiders weaving nets for flies,
By her foul work is found, and in it dies.

Wary as those that trade in poison.

Women are like curst dogs: civility keeps them tied all day-time, but they are let loose at midnight; then they do most good, or most mischief.