Reference > Quotations > Frank J. Wilstach, comp. > A Dictionary of Similes
Frank J. Wilstach, comp.  A Dictionary of Similes.  1916.
Oliver Goldsmith
  Awful as clouds that nurse the glowing storm.  1
  Our bounty, like a drop of water, disappears when diffused too widely.  2
  Friendship as common as a prostitute’s favors.  3
  The critics … like Cerberus, are posted at all the avenues of literature, and who settle the merits of every performance.  4
  Dryden, descending to such game, was like an eagle stooping to catch flies.  5
  Expire like an exhausted taper.  6
  His eyes were like the eyes of doves when washed by the dews of the morning.  7
  Friendship is like a debt of honor; the moment it is talked of it loses its real name, and assumes the more ungrateful form of obligation.  8
Hope, like the glimmering taper’s light
Adorns and cheers the way;
And still, as darker grows the night,
Emits a brighter ray.
  Husbands, like spectacles, to fit every age, from fifteen to fourscore.  10
  Ignorant as a Tripoline ambassador, or an envoy from Mujac.  11
  Inflexible as an oak.  12
  Innocent as a child.  13
  Such men grew wiser as well as better, the farther they departed from home, and seemed like rivers, whose streams are not only increased, but refined, as they traveled from their source.  14
  The world is like a vast sea: mankind like a vessel sailing on its tempestuous bosom. Our prudence is its sails, the sciences serve us for oars, good or bad fortune are the favourable or contrary winds, and judgment is the rudder; without this last, the vessel is tossed by every billow, and will find shipwreck in every breeze.  15
  As mute and motionless as statues.  16
  Like the tiger, that seldom desists from pursuing man, after having once preyed upon human flesh, the reader, who has once gratified his appetite with calumny, makes, ever after, the most agreeable feast upon murdered reputation.  17
  Silent as a Japanese.  18
  Sticks like a weasel.  19
And as a bird each fond endearment tries,
To tempt its new-pledg’d offspring to the skies,
He tried each art, reprov’d each dull delay,
Allur’d to brighter worlds, and led the way.
  Unbounded as the ample air.  21
  Unsteady as the ocean.  22
  His beard was whiter than the feathers which veil the breast of the penguin.  23

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