Re: RARA-AVIS: RE: swift on metaphors

From: Mario Taboada (
Date: 27 Jun 2001


<<Now, I know this is way off-topic, but I'm curious - what

did Swift say exactly? I did my senior thesis on the Dean, so when he talks I tend to listen.>>

It's nice to know there's a fellow Swiftian, Swifty, on the list. I'll have to dig up the reference (maybe it's in the Letter to a Young Poet, I'm not sure), but the substance was that if, in order to describe something, you find yourself having to compare it to something else, then maybe you don't know what you are saying.

Like many masters, Swift tended to metaphorize by means of adjectives; in other words, he placed the metaphor unobtrusively when he did use it. As to simile, it's a dangerous device, best left to the poets.




__________________________________________________ Do You Yahoo!? Get personalized email addresses from Yahoo! Mail

# To unsubscribe from the regular list, say "unsubscribe rara-avis" to
#  This will not work for the digest version.
# The web pages for the list are at .

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 27 Jun 2001 EDT