Difference Between Analogy and Simile

Main Difference – Analogy vs Simile

Analogy and Simile both help to make a comparison between two unrelated objects. Analogy is more like a type of argument where you can see a clear comparison and a relation between two different concepts or objects and simile is a literary device that makes a direct comparison between two different things. The main difference between analogy and simile is that analogy is more extensive and elaborate than a simile.

What is an Analogy

An analogy is a comparison between two different and unrelated things in order to highlight a similarity between the two. Analogy is a type of a logical argument where a new or unfamiliar concept is explained by using a common or familiar object. Analogies are often created by using literary devices of comparison such as similes and metaphors are literary devices; however, an analogy is more extensive and elaborate than either of these literary devices. Analogies are used to explain similarities between two things in order to introduce a new concept or object which can be better understood by comparing it to a known concept. Given below are some examples of analogies.

“Pupils are more like oysters than sausages. The job of teaching is not to stuff them and then seal them up, but to help them open and reveal the riches within. There are pearls in each of us, if only we knew how to cultivate them with ardor and persistence.” – (Sydney J. Harris, “What True Education Should Do,” 1964)

“I like to imagine that the world is one big machine. You know, machines never have any extra parts. They have the exact number and type of parts they need. So I figure if the entire world is a big machine, I have to be here for some reason. And that means you have to be here for some reason, too.” – (Brian Selznick, The Invention of Hugo Cabret)

“Joy is to fun what the deep sea is to a puddle. It’s a feeling inside that can hardly be contained.” – (Terry Pratchett, A Hat Full of Sky)

Main Difference - Analogy vs Simile

“Problems are like washing machines. They twist us, spin us and knock us around, but in the end we come out cleaner, brighter and better than before.”

What is a Simile

Simile is a literary device that makes a direct comparison between two things. The main difference between other types of literary devices of comparison and similes is that it uses connecting words such as like, as, than, etc. This is why similes are called direct comparisons.

We can find similes in various literary work as well as in daily speech. As brave as a lion, as slow as a snail, red as a rose, fit as a fiddle, etc. are some similes we use in our day to day communication.

Here are some examples of similes in literature:

“Elderly American ladies leaning on their canes listed toward me like towers of Pisa.” – Vladimir Nabokov’ ‘Lolita’

“Curley was flopping like a fish on a line.” – John Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men’

“And the executioner went off like an arrow.” – Lewis Carroll’s ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’

“I wandered lonely as a cloud

that floats on high o’er vales and hills.” – William Wordsworth’s ‘Daffodils’

Difference Between Analogy and Simile

She is as cute as a button.

Difference Between Analogy and Simile


Analogy creates a relationship based on parallels or connections between two ideas.

Simile compares two objects with the use of connecting words.


Analogy is generally longer than a simile since it can be as lengthy as a paragraph.

Simile usually consists of one sentence; therefore, it is shorter than an analogy.


Analogy is more elaborate and extensive than a simile.

Simile is more simple and basic than an analogy.Difference Between Analogy and Simile- infographic

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