Difference Between Metaphor and Metonymy

Main Difference – Metaphor vs Metonymy

Metaphor and Metonymy are two commonly used literary devices in literature. Metaphor is a figure of speech that compares two unrelated subjects without the use of connecting words like “like” or “as.” Metonymy is a figure of speech in which the name of an idea or object is substituted for another name that the original name is closely associated with. The main difference between metaphor and metonymy is that metaphor compares two things whereas metonymy replaces one thing for another.

What is a Metaphor

A metaphor is a literary device that makes a comparison between two unrelated things. The term metaphor actually comes from Greek metaphorá which literally means carrying over. As this name implies, metaphor transfers meaning from one object to another so that the second object can be understood in a new way. The comparison made by a metaphor is indirect, implied or hidden. Unlike similes, it does not use connecting works such as like, or as. The following examples will help you to comprehend the function and the nature of metaphors.

“Books are the mirrors of the soul.”― Virginia Woolf

“Dying is a wild night and a new road.” – Emily Dickinson

“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

“Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.”― Truman Capote

“The rain came down in long knitting needles.” – Enid BagnoldDifference Between Metaphor and Metonymy

What is Metonymy

The term metonymy comes from Greek, meta and ononma, which literally means substituting of a name. This figure of speech also has a similar function; it substitutes the name of an idea with another name that the original name is closely associated with. For example, grey hair can be used to mean old age, and throne can be used to mean monarchy. Metonymy is used in literature as well as in everyday life. For example, you must have heard of the saying “pen is mightier than the sword.” This is an example of metonymy; pen represents the written word, and sword represents physical fighting.

Given below are some examples of the use of metonymy in literature

       ” Sceptre and Crown            

        Must tumble down,       

  And in the dust be equal made       

With the poor crookèd scythe and spade.”    

– Death the Leveller by James Shirley

“As he swung toward them holding up the hand

Half in appeal, but half as if to keep

The life from spilling”

– Robert Frost’s Out Out

“The party preserved a dignified homogeneity, and assumed to itself the function of representing the staid nobility of the countryside—East Egg condescending to West Egg, and carefully on guard against its spectroscopic gayety.”

 – The Great Gatsby by F. Scott FitzgeraldDifference Between Metaphor and Metonymy

Difference Between Metaphor and Metonymy

Definition

Metaphor is a literary device where a word or phrase is applied to an object or action to which it is not literally applicable.

Metonymy is a literary device that involves the substitution of a name of an attribute or adjunct for that of the thing meant.

Function

Metaphor compares two unrelated concepts.

Metonymy substitutes the thing named for the thing meant.Difference Between Metaphor and Metonymy- infographic

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.


Related pages


difference between condiments and accompanimentswhat is the difference between metaphor and similedefine hot bloodedfoot feet grammarserf feudalismdifference between bigamy and polygamyrepose definedmania and hypomania differenceadverbials examplesautogamy in plantsliterary example of satirepredicate nomnitivewhat is litotes in literaturedifference between romanticism and realismcolour of chakra in indian flagosmotic colloid pressuremanuscripts and inscriptionsexamples of a pure compoundadjectives of quantity exercisesfermions bosonsadjectives of quantityaffix definition and examplescomparison of sociology and anthropologyprincipal of conservation of linear momentumdefinition of a haiku poemdiastereoisomers definitionvaporation definitionpst vs edtmoth and butterfly differencediffrence between osmosis and diffusiondifference between fettuccine and linguineferrous ionhomonym vs homophone vs homographthe difference between knitting and crochetakita inu factseminent antonympast participle of leadsmooch indiandifference between crocodile and alligator leathersn1 vs sn2 reaction mechanismwhat is meaning of madamdifferences between asexual and sexualapparent absolute magnitudedifference between vernier caliper and micrometerrationalism and empiricism differencesa car battery is an example of a wet celltransmittance to absorbance formulatyphoid and paratyphoid fever symptomsomnivore teethemigrant vs imigrantgerman shepherd vs alsatiandifference between rock and mineralsmeaning of bicameral legislaturedefine n type and p type semiconductorwhat is gesture and postureelocutionist meaningsuccessor and predecessor definitiondefinition of tragic comedyprosocial behaviour and altruismstructure of ribose and deoxyribose sugarkinematic vs dynamic viscositydifference between soluble and insoluble fibersdifference between broil and bakewhat are two examples of amorphous solidsdefinition of boiling point and melting pointnpn vs pnpdifference between saturated fatty acid and unsaturated fatty aciddifference between photophosphorylation and oxidative phosphorylationoogenesis and spermatogenesisclassification of eubacteriathe meaning of boiling pointpules definitionwhat are thermoset plasticsgluconeogenesis and glycolysisb12 vs b complexaffixes include prefixes and suffixesdifference between lecturer and professorwhat is the difference between a cation and an anion