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Hyperbole   /haɪpˈərbəlˌi/   Listen
Hyperbole

noun
1.
Extravagant exaggeration.  Synonym: exaggeration.






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"Hyperbole" Quotes from Famous Books



... rummaged all the most likely places in search of a pipe and tobacco, but without avail. I even extended my researches into the pantry, and thence into the sacred precincts of the front parlour. But the tobacco-famine raged equally everywhere. The place was a residence, but by no stretch of hyperbole could you ...
— Such is Life • Joseph Furphy

... chronological line of descent, you will find them all made after the same pattern. The real personage is all covered up and concealed under the embroidered veils of the romancer and the enthusiastic historiographer. What is surprising to me is that this tendency to exaggeration and hyperbole is not more commonly allowed for by those who in our days attempt to discuss and compare religions. We are constantly and painfully reminded that the prejudice of inimical critics, on the one hand, and the furious bigotry of devotees, on the other, ...
— The Life of Buddha and Its Lessons • H.S. Olcott

... no hyperbole; it fails of a complete description only in neglecting to chronicle the fact that a large proportion of the audience left the audience-room at the beginning of the bestial apostrophe to the head of the ...
— Chapters of Opera • Henry Edward Krehbiel

... a tale of wild romance, and myth, In large hyperbole the New World told, And down from days of Raleigh and of Smith The ...
— A Wreath of Virginia Bay Leaves • James Barron Hope

... foreigners the Irish are by far the most numerous. Light-hearted, wrongheaded, impulsive, uncalculating, with an Oriental love of hyperbole, and too often a common dislike of cold water and of that gem which the fable tells us rests at the bottom of the well, the Celtic elements of their character do not readily accommodate themselves to those of the hard, cool, self-relying Anglo-Saxon. I am free to ...
— The Complete Works of Whittier - The Standard Library Edition with a linked Index • John Greenleaf Whittier

... of things beyond their natural limits is called hyperbole. Language that signifies, literally, more than the exact truth, more than is really intended to be represented, by which a thing is represented greater or less, better or worse than it really is, is said to be hyperbolical. Hyperbole ...
— The Verbalist • Thomas Embly Osmun, (AKA Alfred Ayres)

... heap of monstrous stories, only more conspicuous by their incredibility. He is unpardonable, therefore, who cannot distinguish one from the other; but lays on history the paint of poetry, its flattery, fable, and hyperbole: it is just as ridiculous as it would be to clothe one of our robust wrestlers, who is as hard as an oak, in fine purple, or some such meretricious garb, and put paint {26} on his cheeks; how would such ornaments ...
— Trips to the Moon • Lucian

... genius of the Greeks, these have nothing in common, but the name, the outward form, and the mythological materials; and yet they seem to have been composed with the obvious purpose of surpassing them; in which attempt they succeed as much as a hollow hyperbole would in competition with a most fervent truth. Every tragical common-place is worried out to the last gasp; all is phrase; and even the most common remark is forced and stilted. A total poverty ...
— Lectures on Dramatic Art - and Literature • August Wilhelm Schlegel trans John Black

... English and Irish, went half naked and half starving through the whole inclement winter, and perished of pestilence in droves, after confronting the less formidable dangers of battlefield and leaguer. Manfully and sympathetically did the Earl of Leicester—while whining in absurd hyperbole over the angry demeanour of his sovereign towards himself-represent the imperative duty of an English ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... it difficult, without resorting to what would be thought downright hyperbole, to express adequately the admiration excited by the appearance of this last miracle of literary and artistic achievement."—Maine ...
— Godey's Lady's Book, Vol. 42, January, 1851 • Various

... every form of democracy. Poor white people have not the slightest chance of his good opinion. The pedigree and history of his master's family possess an epic dignity in his imagination; and the liberty he takes with facts concerning them amounts to a grand poetical hyperbole. He represents their wealth in past times to have amounted to something of a fabulous superfluity, and their magnificence so unbounded, that he stares at you in describing it, as if its excess ...
— Atlantic Monthly Vol. 6, No. 33, July, 1860 • Various

... fail to imitate the writing of Tacitus; he failed to imitate it also in sequence of ideas. There is unquestionably resemblance in the absence of circumlocution; in such considerable conciseness that words are as sentences; in there being no hyperbole, and in judicious language at all times consonant with the solidity of the instructions conducive to wisdom in political and civil life. But in order to effect this Bracciolini clipped his sentences as a gardener clips hedges: a sentence is now and then like an amputated limb; a word ...
— Tacitus and Bracciolini - The Annals Forged in the XVth Century • John Wilson Ross

... essential ideas, that in her, and her alone, resides an instrument of knowledge competent for the comprehension of truth, even the highest, which she only is able to behold face to face. It is no hyperbole that is involved in the saying, 'The pure in heart see God.' True, the man cannot see God. But the divine in man sees God. And this occurs when, by means of his soul's union with God, the man becomes 'one with the Father', and beholds God with ...
— The Life Radiant • Lilian Whiting

... too much, charge the sums to my account, not yours—but on this condition, let the edifices be inscribed with my name, not that of the Athenian people." This mode of defence, though perhaps but an oratorical hyperbole [262], conveyed a rebuke which the Athenians were an audience calculated to answer but in one way—they dismissed the accusation, and applauded ...
— Athens: Its Rise and Fall, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... existence. I listened with feverish greed to the yarns until my vision became confused and I fancied him not only close by me but imagined I heard his sombre cry of despair beseeching our compassion. The sailor's delight in hyperbole led one of our comrades to relate most charmingly the story of the baker's first appearance in Stromboli. An English barque some years ago lay becalmed within a mile from the Stromboli shore. The captain and officers knew the biscuit manufacturer ...
— The Shellback's Progress - In the Nineteenth Century • Walter Runciman

... are too apt to take them merely for sublime and vague imagery, and therefore gradually to lose the apprehension of their life and power. The expression, "He bowed the Heavens," for instance, is, I suppose, received by most readers as a magnificent hyperbole, having reference to some peculiar and fearful manifestation of God's power to the writer of the Psalm in which the words occur. But the expression either has plain meaning, or it has no meaning. Understand ...
— Modern Painters, Volume IV (of V) • John Ruskin

... Excellent goddess, to a man's, whose worth, Without hyperbole, I thus may praise; One at least studious of deserving well, And, to speak truth, indeed deserving well. Potential merit stands for actual, Where only opportunity doth want, Not will, nor power; both which in him abound, ...
— Cynthia's Revels • Ben Jonson

... pointed to that lovely statuette of Pallas that stands on the mantelpiece, and said bitterly, 'Edna Earl has no more heart than that marble Athena.' Whereupon I replied, 'Take care, Gordon. I notice that of late you seem inclined to deal rather too freely in hyperbole. Edna's heart may resemble the rich veins of gold, which in some mines run not near the surface but deep in the masses of quartz. Because you can not obtain it, you have no right to declare that ...
— St. Elmo • Augusta J. Evans

... the life of Christians; and the more mystical and disinterested they were, the more it has tended to take the place of Hebraism. But the Platonists, too, when left to their instincts, follow their master in attributing power and existence, by a sort of cumulative worship and imaginative hyperbole, to what in the first place they worship because it is good. To divorce, then, as the modernists do, the history of the world from the story of salvation, and God's government and the sanctions of religion from the operation ...
— Winds Of Doctrine - Studies in Contemporary Opinion • George Santayana

... autonomasia|!, irony, figurativeness &c. adj.; image, imagery; metalepsis[obs3], type, anagoge[obs3], simile, personification, prosopopoeia[obs3], allegory, apologue[obs3], parable, fable; allusion, adumbration; application. exaggeration , hyperbole &c. 549. association, association of ideas (analogy) 514a V. employ -metaphor &c. n.; personify, allegorize, adumbrate, shadow forth, apply, allude to. Adj. metaphorical, figurative, catachrestical[obs3], typical, tralatitious[obs3], ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... "Hyperbole is a fault of no trivial importance in conversation. Carried, as it generally is, to such an extent, it is nothing more nor less than equivalent to lying. It frequently places the Hyperbolist in a position of distrustful scrutiny ...
— Talkers - With Illustrations • John Bate

... of the language, somewhat allied to hyperbole, even in its most ordinary expressions, now seemed almost too weak to afford Elspat the means of bringing out the splendid picture which she presented to her son of the land in which she proposed to him to take refuge. Yet ...
— Chronicles of the Canongate • Sir Walter Scott

... lay in his last illness, he asked Lockhart one day to read to him. "From what book shall I read?" said Lockhart. "There is but one book," was Scott's answer. Those who have sought the "power to become the sons of God" will understand this hyperbole of the most healthy human mind in modern English literature. Tested by experience there is indeed, in the wide range of the literature of power, no book to be mentioned with the Bible for feeding the life of God in man. Our fathers found this true, and their children ...
— The Right and Wrong Uses of the Bible • R. Heber Newton

... like a boast—like one of those picturesque expressions with which the Eastern mind enjoys to overstate its case. But he reflected on it. As an Orientalist of admitted distinction he had long ago concluded that hyperbole in the East is always based on some fact hidden in the user's mind, often without the user's knowledge. He had written a paper on that very subject, which the Spectator printed with favorable editorial comment; and Mendelsohn K. C. had written him a very agreeable letter stating ...
— Guns of the Gods • Talbot Mundy

... Homer; but he is also compared to Ariosto, because of his wealth of imagery. His heroes are very different from those to whom we have been wont to pay our allegiance; but they fight for the same principles and worship as lovely maids, to judge from the hyperbole employed in their description. The condensation of the Shah-Nameh reads like a dry chronicle; but in its entirety it reminds one of nothing so much as a gorgeous Persian web, so light and varied, so brightened is it by its ...
— National Epics • Kate Milner Rabb

... that the housework to be done at The Shrubbery was nothing, she was guilty of hyperbole. All the same, the house was an easy one, and such labour as its upkeep entailed melted, beneath the perfectly organized attention of herself, Anne, and Lyveden, as snow beneath the midday sun. The three had more legitimate leisure ...
— Anthony Lyveden • Dornford Yates

... advertising better than Barnum. Knowing that mammon is ever caught with glare, he took pains that his posters should be larger, his transparencies more brilliant, his puffing more persistent than anybody elses. And if he resorted to hyperbole at times in his advertisements, it was always his boast that no one ever went away from his Museum, without having received the worth of his money. It used to amuse Mr. Barnum later in life, to relate some of the unique advertising dodges which his inventive genius devised. ...
— A Unique Story of a Marvellous Career. Life of Hon. Phineas T. • Joel Benton

... eccentricity, and we grasp it so imperfectly, that we are apt to deny it altogether, and conceive his mind as impersonal. In view of the multiplicity of his creations, and the range of thought, emotion, and character they include, it is a common hyperbole of criticism to designate him as universal. But, in truth, his mind was restricted, in its creative action, like other minds, within the limits of its personal sympathies, though these sympathies in him were keener, quicker, and more general than in other men of ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 20, No. 118, August, 1867 • Various

... Or a language to my mind (Still the phrase is wide or scant), To take leave of thee, Great Plant! Or in any terms relate Half my love, or half my hate: For I hate yet love thee so, That, whichever thing I show, The plain truth will seem to be A constrained hyperbole, And the passions to proceed More from a mistress than ...
— English Satires • Various

... Nazareth, the most exalted religious genius whom God ever sent upon the earth; in himself an embodied revelation; humanity in its divinest phase, 'God manifest in the flesh,' according to eastern hyperbole; an exemplar given in an early age of the world to show what man may and should become in the course of ages; in his progress towards the realization of his destiny; an individual gifted with a grand, clear intellect, a noble soul, a fine ...
— The Christian Foundation, Or, Scientific and Religious Journal, - Volume I, No. 9. September, 1880 • Various

... nonchalantly. He was a thin, anaemic-looking young fellow a couple of years younger than Virginia who affected a swagger and gloves and who had a cough which was insistent, but which he strove to disguise. And yet Florrie's hyperbole had not been entirely without warrant. He had something of Virginia's fine profile, a look of her in his eyes, the stamp of good blood upon him. He suffered his sister to kiss him, meantime turning his eyes ...
— The Bells of San Juan • Jackson Gregory

... of good breeding do not over-exploit their distinguished guests with embarrassing hyperbole, or make personal remarks. Both are in worst possible taste. Do not understand by this that explanations can not be made; it is only that they must not be embarrassingly made to their faces. Nor must a "specialist's" subject be forced upon him, like a pair of ...
— Etiquette • Emily Post

... upon that loyal Moslem Kheyred-Din Barbarossa, who, in the words of the Padishah, "abandoning a sterile independence, sought in all the bloody hazards of his life nought but the glory of God and His Prophet" To us this hyperbole, addressed to a pirate, seems merely ridiculous, but in those days of fanaticism the beliefs of men, both Christians and Moslems, are something which it is impossible for us to realise. On either side the way of salvation was the path of conquest, and the man who was heretic to ...
— Sea-Wolves of the Mediterranean • E. Hamilton Currey

... want most awfully to do Bismarck. He looks SO splendid this morning, so FIERCE. He's almost as big as a lion.' And the child chuckled sardonically at her own hyperbole. 'He's a ...
— Women in Love • D. H. Lawrence

... say of a woman, that she only does not destroy where she passes. She should revive; the harebells should bloom, not stoop, as she passes. You think I am rushing into wild hyperbole! Pardon me, not a whit—I mean what I say in calm English, spoken in resolute truth. You have heard it said—(and I believe there is more than fancy even in that saying, but let it pass for a fanciful one)—that flowers only flourish rightly in the garden of some one ...
— Sesame and Lilies • John Ruskin

... Ritter in taking trecenos as loosely put for 365, a steer for each day in the year. The hyperbole, as he says, would otherwise be too extravagant. And richer spilth the ...
— Odes and Carmen Saeculare of Horace • Horace

... worship, and gave his landlord joy of the hopes of his house, did not slander his compliment with worse application than he that names this shred an historian. To call him an Historian is to knight a Mandrake; 'tis to view him through a perspective, and, by that gross hyperbole, to give the reputation of an engineer to a maker of mousetraps. When these weekly fragments shall pass for history, let the poor man's box be entitled the Exchequer, and the alms-basket a Magazine. Methinks the Turke should license Diurnals, ...
— Calamities and Quarrels of Authors • Isaac D'Israeli

... mushroom is a cryptogamic plant of the class Fungi; particularly the agaricoid fungi and especially the edible forms. Language is the means of concealing thought. A rectangle of equal sides is a square. Hyperbole is a natural exaggeration for the purpose ...
— Public Speaking • Clarence Stratton

... gentleman," applying each sentence to his Right Honourable friend with an emphasis that seemed to burst from his heart. To all of the audience, save two, it was an eulogium which the fervent sincerity of the eulogist alone saved from hyperbole. But Levy rubbed his hands, and chuckled inly; and Egerton hung his head, and moved restlessly on his seat. Every word that Harley uttered lodged an arrow in Audley's breast. Amidst the cheers that followed this admirable sketch of the "loyal ...
— My Novel, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... a supper," said Lucien to Blondet, hoping to rid himself of this mob, which threatened to increase, "it seems to me that you need not work up hyperbole and parable to attack an old friend as if he were a booby. To-morrow night at Lointier's——" he cried, seeing a woman come by, whom ...
— Scenes from a Courtesan's Life • Honore de Balzac

... had fought under William and the great grandsons of those who had fought under Harold began to draw near to each other." Macaulay was a great scene painter, who neglected delicate truths of detail for exaggerated distemper effects. He used the {283} rhetorical machinery of climax and hyperbole for all that it was worth, and he "made points"—as in his essay on Bacon—by creating antithesis. In his History of England, he inaugurated the picturesque method of historical writing. The book was as fascinating as any ...
— Brief History of English and American Literature • Henry A. Beers

... la Lune," exaggerates the romantic so decidedly as to seem ironical. It is hard to say whether it is hyperbole or parody. See Petit de Julleville, vol. ...
— A History of English Romanticism in the Nineteenth Century • Henry A. Beers

... had it from Fenellan; and he was among the principal groups, claiming or making acquaintances, as a lawyer should do. The Concert was complimentarily a topic: Durandarte divine!—did not everybody think so? Everybody did, in default of a term for overtopping it. Our language is poor at hyperbole; our voices are stronger. Gestures and heaven-sent eyeballs invoke to display the ineffable. Where was Durandarte now? Gone; already gone; off with the Luciani for evening engagements; he came simply ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... record their satisfaction. With them, as with all audiences, the actors and the SPECTACLE, much more than the "cackle," were the attractions. When Dr. Ingleby says that "the bard of our admiration was unknown to the men of that age," he uses hyperbole, and means, I presume, that he was unknown, as all authors are, to the great majority; and that those who knew him in part made no modern fuss about ...
— Shakespeare, Bacon and the Great Unknown • Andrew Lang

... may be an indefinite degree of hyperbole. The language of love and hate, of confidence and despair, is not the language of description. In this train of the religious consciousness there is occasion for whatever eloquence man can feel, and whatever rhetorical luxuriance he ...
— The Approach to Philosophy • Ralph Barton Perry

... were once dining in one of the little Bohemian restaurants of San Francisco. Two of them made a bet with the others that they could kiss every woman in the room. They went from table to table and in mellifluous accents, plus a strain of hyperbole, explained their predicament to each lady, concluding with a respectful demand for a kiss. Every woman in the room (with the gallant indulgence of her swain) acceded to this amazing request. In fifteen minutes all the kisses were collected and the wager won. I don't ...
— The Native Son • Inez Haynes Irwin

... says the text which to us appears hyperbole run mad. So when King Omar (vol. ii. 123) violently rapes the unfortunate Princess Abrizah "the blood runs down the calves of her legs." This is not ignorance, but that systematic exaggeration which is held necessary to impressionise ...
— Supplemental Nights, Volume 5 • Richard F. Burton

... humour the latter was naturally an attractive subject for ridicule. Like everything else in these romances, it is a gross exaggeration of the real sentiment of chivalry, but its peculiar extravagance is probably due to the influence of those masters of hyperbole, the Provencal poets. When a troubadour professed his readiness to obey his lady in all things, he made it incumbent upon the next comer, if he wished to avoid the imputation of tameness and commonplace, to declare himself the slave of her will, which the next was compelled to cap by some ...
— Don Quixote • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... voyages through space it is no hyperbole to compare him to a whole fleet, judiciously shown at such distance as to suppress every minute detail that could diminish the grandeur ...
— Life of John Milton • Richard Garnett

... partiality of a lover's eye— having not the slightest suspicion that their object was possessed of such merits. No more should I question the justice of his admiration, nor wonder at its warmth. The rude hyperbole that had occasionally escaped him, when speaking of the "girl"—as he called her—no longer appeared extravagant. In truth, the charms of this magnificent maiden were worthy of metaphoric phrase. Perhaps, had I seen her first—before looking ...
— The Wild Huntress - Love in the Wilderness • Mayne Reid

... beasts are), yet of the eye; which was given him for higher purposes. It is a strange thing, to note the excess of this passion, and how it braves the nature, and value of things, by this; that the speaking in a perpetual hyperbole, is comely in nothing but in love. Neither is it merely in the phrase; for whereas it hath been well said, that the arch-flatterer, with whom all the petty flatterers have intelligence, is a man's self; certainly the lover is more. For there was never proud man thought so absurdly well ...
— Essays - The Essays Or Counsels, Civil And Moral, Of Francis Ld. - Verulam Viscount St. Albans • Francis Bacon

... children, and talking to her friends of the prodigious sacrifice she was about to make for her brother and his family, as if it had been the cutting off of a hand or the plucking out of an eye. To have heard her, anyone unaccustomed to the hyperbole of fashionable language would have deemed Botany Bay the nearest possible point of destination. Parting from her fashionable acquaintances was tearing herself from all she loved; quitting London was bidding adieu to the ...
— Marriage • Susan Edmonstone Ferrier

... actor in this way, one is always open to accusations of prejudice, hyperbole, uncritical gush, unreasoned eulogy, and the rest. Must a careful and deliberate opinion always deny a great man genius? If so, no careful and ...
— The Story of My Life - Recollections and Reflections • Ellen Terry

... has been understood hitherto to mean only that God teaches men through the Word and has been explained as an hyperbole, with the implication that the Lord is not the Word itself. This is because expositors did not know that the Word is divine truth together with divine good or, what is the same, divine wisdom together with divine love. That ...
— Angelic Wisdom about Divine Providence • Emanuel Swedenborg

... is, that any attempt at details where so little is known to have been preserved, must necessarily, of itself, subject to doubt any narrative not fortified by the most conclusive evidence. Unfortunately for the reverend historian, his known eccentricities as a writer, and fondness for hyperbole, must always deprive his books—though remarkably useful and interesting to the young—of any authority which might be claimed for them as histories. As fictions from history, lively and romantic, they are certainly very astonishing ...
— The Life of Francis Marion • William Gilmore Simms

... blood, certainly of Celtic sympathies, and he set himself more swiftly though more subtly than Ruskin or Swinburne to undermining the enormous complacency of John Bull. He also had a sincere hope in the strength of womanhood, and may be said, almost without hyperbole, to have begotten gigantic daughters. He may yet suffer for his chivalric interference as many champions do. I have little doubt that when St. George had killed the dragon he was heartily afraid of the princess. But certainly neither of these two vital enthusiasms touched the Victorian ...
— The Victorian Age in Literature • G. K. Chesterton

... tried to imitate this salon, Spanish chivalry doubtless degenerated into a thousand absurdities, and it must be admitted that the salon itself was not free from reproach on this point. It became the fashion to write and talk in the language of hyperbole. Sighing lovers were consumed with artificial fires, and ready to die with affected languors. Like the old poets of Provence, whose spirit they caught and whose phrases they repeated, they were dying of love they did not feel. The eyes of Phyllis extinguished the sun. The very nightingales ...
— The Women of the French Salons • Amelia Gere Mason

... with presents more valueless, and an assurance of friendship more sonorous, more complete in rhetoric and aptness of hyperbole, and when the messenger had gone Bosambo showed his appreciation of N'gori's love by doubling the guard about the Ochori city and sending a strong picket under his chief headman to hold the ...
— Bones - Being Further Adventures in Mr. Commissioner Sanders' Country • Edgar Wallace

... servant whom I bid to exchange itself for beauty. These"—she stripped the petals from a red rose in a vase near her, and tossed them in the air—"these are the real wealth of the world. And Brutus says I am stilted, exaggerated in my conversation, given to metaphor and hyperbole. That is because I dare to express what I feel, and since everywhere I see parables ...
— The Silver Butterfly • Mrs. Wilson Woodrow

... characterised by no adequate word but the word magnificent (a word too often and lightly abused). In reality, speaking of women, I have seen many beautiful figures, but hardly one except Agnes that could without hyperbole be styled truly and memorably magnificent. Though in the first order of tall women, yet, being full in person, and with a symmetry that was absolutely faultless, she seemed to the random sight as little above the ordinary height. ...
— The Uncollected Writings of Thomas de Quincey, Vol. 2 - With a Preface and Annotations by James Hogg • Thomas de Quincey

... birds) of his native Highlands. The present volume is chiefly the result of spare-moment activities during his service as coast-watcher among the Hebrides. Despite its unpropitious title, I must describe it without hyperbole as a production of wonder and delight. Of its forty-eight photographic illustrations not one is short of amazing. We are become used to fine achievement in this kind, but I am inclined to think Mr. GORDON goes one better, both in the "atmosphere" of his mountain pictures and in his studies of ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 159, November 10, 1920 • Various

... perverters of the truth, and so often hide what little there may be in their communications under such floods of Oriental hyperbole and exaggeration, that you are often disappointed in going out on what you consider trustworthy and certain information. They often remind me of the story of the Laird of Logan. He was riding slowly along a country road one day, when another equestrian ...
— Sport and Work on the Nepaul Frontier - Twelve Years Sporting Reminiscences of an Indigo Planter • James Inglis

... the address of Tobias, 4, 11, ought to be received: Alms free from every sin and from death. We will not say that this is hyperbole, although it ought thus to be received, so as not to detract from the praise of Christ, whose prerogative it is to free from sin and death. But we must come back to the rule that without Christ the doctrine of the Law is of no profit. Therefore those alms ...
— The Apology of the Augsburg Confession • Philip Melanchthon

... day like that before it or after it, that the Lord hearkened unto the voice of a man." Some have sought to explain the whole passage as a quotation from "the book of Jasher" expressed in the language of poetic hyperbole; and they have compared with it such poetic amplifications as those contained in Psa. 18:7-16; Hab., chap. 3, etc. But this interpretation is forced and unnatural; and besides this, there remains the analogous event of which we have a double record in 2 Kings 20:8-11; Isa. 38: 7, 8, and which is ...
— Companion to the Bible • E. P. Barrows

... with a movement of pleasant interest, meant to verify his recent gallant promise; but he turned so quickly that his face had no time to come into the kindly conspiracy, and no triumph of hyperbole could have described its ...
— Captivating Mary Carstairs • Henry Sydnor Harrison

... two passages from "Coriolanus" and "King John" what magnificence of hyperbole! The imagination of the reader, swept on from image to image, is strained to follow that of the poet. And yet, to the capable, how the pile of amplification lifts out the naked truth. Read these passages to ...
— Essays AEsthetical • George Calvert

... Tito spoke were a part of the procession esteemed very glorious by the Florentine populace; and being perhaps chiefly a kind of hyperbole for the all-efficacious wax taper, were also called ceri. But inasmuch as hyperbole is impracticable in a real and literal fashion, these gigantic ceri, some of them so large as to be of necessity carried on wheels, were not solid but hollow, and had their surface made not ...
— Romola • George Eliot

... for mighty likely it's three hours, an' no one gets a verbal rise outen him more'n if he's a graven image. Vance is gettin' proud of himse'f, an' Jenkins, who comes prowlin' 'round the game at times, begins to reckon mebby Vance'll do. All goes well ontil a party lets fly some hyperbole about a tavern he strikes in Little Rock, which for size an' extensif characteristics lays over anythin' on earth like ...
— Wolfville Days • Alfred Henry Lewis

... expedition. The stream was broad and rapid; the ascent steep and difficult; and the intrenchments which had been formed on the ridge of the opposite bank, were lined with a numerous army of heavy cuirassiers, dexterous archers, and huge elephants; who (according to the extravagant hyperbole of Libanius) could trample with the same ease a field of corn, or a legion of Romans. In the presence of such an enemy, the construction of a bridge was impracticable; and the intrepid prince, who instantly seized the only possible expedient, ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 2 • Edward Gibbon

... vastly different, like their ways of thinking. Bacon's essay on Love is cynical. The man of the world, the well-bred statesman, looked on Love as "the child of folly," a necessary nuisance, a tragi-comical perturbation. Shakespeare saw in Love the mainspring of life. Love speaks "in a perpetual hyperbole," said Bacon. Shakespeare also said that the lover "sees Helen's beauty in a brow of Egypt," The poet knew all the philosopher knew, and more. What Bacon laughed or sneered at, Shakespeare recognised as the magic ...
— Flowers of Freethought - (Second Series) • George W. Foote

... Such hyperbole naturally challenged opposition, and Maimonides' opponents did not hesitate to give voice to their deep indignation, ...
— Jewish Literature and Other Essays • Gustav Karpeles

... posterity. Candid, but decided in his judgment of motives and actions, if we except his invectives against Pompey, he shows little propensity to censure; but in awarding praise, he is not equally parsimonious, and, on some occasions, risks the imputation of hyperbole. The grace, however, and the apparent sincerity with which it is bestowed, reconcile us to the compliment. This author concludes his history with a prayer for the prosperity ...
— The Lives Of The Twelve Caesars, Complete - To Which Are Added, His Lives Of The Grammarians, Rhetoricians, And Poets • C. Suetonius Tranquillus

... her also to know, that in the East one must use hyperbole, or else remain unheard; because the Eastern man must see a thing swelling to fill all heaven, or dwindled to a mere nothing, before he is suitably impressed. She immediately sympathized ...
— The Rainbow • D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence

... reading, I believe I may aver, without hyperbole, it has been tolerably extensive in the historical department; so that few nations exist, or have existed, with whose records I am not in some degree acquainted, from Herodotus down to Gibbon. Of the classics, I know ...
— The Works Of Lord Byron, Letters and Journals, Vol. 1 • Lord Byron, Edited by Rowland E. Prothero

... elements, as the towering palm or the tapering pine! Well, we had the satisfaction for a time of claiming the tallest structure in the world; and now that the new Tower of Babel which has sprung up in Paris has killed that pretention, I think we shall feel and speak more modestly about our stone hyperbole, our materialization of the American love of the superlative. We have the higher civilization among us, and we must try to keep down the forth-putting instincts of the lower. We do not want to see our national monument placarded as "the greatest show on earth,"—perhaps it is well that it is ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... freethinkers dispute them in our days upon philosophical principles; they attribute them to a diseased imagination, the prejudices of education, and hidden springs of the constitution; they reduce the expressions of Scripture to hyperbole; they maintain that Jesus Christ condescended to the understanding of the people, and their prepossessions or prejudices; that demons being purely spiritual substances could not by themselves act immediately upon bodies; and that it is not at all probable God ...
— The Phantom World - or, The philosophy of spirits, apparitions, &c, &c. • Augustin Calmet

... or Oriental that you will find the most of what extravagance there is in English literature. In America you find extravagance in our humor, and this humor, perhaps, owes as much of its extravagance to an Irish ancestry as to an environment of new wonders that could not be well expressed save in hyperbole. ...
— Irish Plays and Playwrights • Cornelius Weygandt

... HYPERBOLE is an exaggeration in which more is expressed than is intended to be understood. Example.—"I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written." John 21:25—meaning that a great number ...
— A Brief Commentary on the Apocalypse • Sylvester Bliss

... don't exaggerate," said Sam in a remonstrative tone. "Hyperbole is very objectionable, especially in young men. You know that if you were tied to a huge gridiron over a slow fire, you would be more miserable than ...
— The Battery and the Boiler - Adventures in Laying of Submarine Electric Cables • R.M. Ballantyne

... tongues, poets honouring with despairing emulation, the whole mind of educated man feeling the transcendent power of the poet of the Iliad and Odyssey. Surely, the boasted triumph of poetry over space and time is no daring hyperbole—surely, it is little more than ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 17, No. 476, Saturday, February 12, 1831 • Various

... the same judicious oversight we have when "in rushed Nat, under great excitement, with his eyes 'as large as saucers,' to use a hyperbole, which means only that his eyes looked very large indeed." The impression which would have been made upon the rising generation, had the testimony been allowed to go forth without its corrective, that upon a certain occasion any Governor's ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 14, No. 85, November, 1864 • Various

... I would relieve him with my queen; till he had exhausted all the coin in the purse of his resolution, and expended all the arrows of the quiver of his argument. "Take heed and retreat not from the orator's attack, for nothing is left him but metaphor and hyperbole. Wield thy polemics and law citations, for the wordy rhetorician made a show of arms over his gate, but has not a soldier within his fort":—At length, having no syllogism left, I made him crouch in mental submission. He stretched forth the arm of violence, ...
— Persian Literature, Volume 2, Comprising The Shah Nameh, The - Rubaiyat, The Divan, and The Gulistan • Anonymous

... the world at large. It is thus he opens his address:—"GENTLEMEN, You are met here on the greatest occasion that, I believe, England ever saw; having upon your shoulders the interests of three great nations, with the territories belonging to them: and truly I believe I may say it without any hyperbole, you have upon your shoulders the interest of all the Christian people in the world. And the expectation is, that I should let you know, as far as I have cognisance of it, the occasion of your assembling together at ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 61, No. 378, April, 1847 • Various

... was considered as being still more masterly and eloquent, and it was certainly well suited to the taste of French soldiers, who, as Bourrienne remarks, are wonderfully pleased with grandiloquence, metaphor, and hyperbole, though they do not always understand what they mean. Even a French author of some distinction praises this address as something sublime. "The proclamation to the army," says he, "is full of energy: it could not fail to make all military imaginations ...
— The Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte • Bourrienne, Constant, and Stewarton

... guilt. Yet, even after they had stooped to acts of which it is impossible to read the account in the most partial narratives without strong disapprobation and contempt, the public still continued to regard them with a feeling not easily to be distinguished from esteem. The hyperbole of Juliet seemed to be verified with respect to them. "Upon their brows shame was ashamed to sit." Everybody seemed as desirous to throw a veil over their misconduct as if it had been his own. Clarendon, who felt, and who had reason to feel, strong personal dislike ...
— Critical and Historical Essays Volume 2 • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... we still claim, and the renown which was once accorded to us. By so doing, and by so doing only, shall our former grandeur come back to us—though its garments be stained with blood. A grandeur which, without hyperbole, it may be said, will outstrip the glory which, as a young and sanguine people, we have ever claimed for our country. The reason for so believing is the simple and undeniable fact that out of the saddening humiliation and devastation ...
— Continental Monthly, Vol. III, No IV, April 1863 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... his impression of the impulse and the spectacle: Said he: "I never saw any thing like it:" language which seems curiously undertoned, considering its application; but from the taciturn Commander it was equivalent to a superlative or hyperbole from ...
— Battle-Pieces and Aspects of the War • Herman Melville

... Boethius, Priscian, and Donatus; Latin and French were studied; the fellows were bound to converse together in Latin; a regulation also prescribed that the scholars should be taught Latin prosody, and accustomed to write epistles "in decent language, without emphasis or hyperbole, ... and as much as possible full of sense."[252] Objectionable passages are to be avoided; Ovid's "Art of Love" and the book of love ...
— A Literary History of the English People - From the Origins to the Renaissance • Jean Jules Jusserand

... his writings are characteristic of the boldness and vigor of the age. In his works we find the fundamental idea of the Greek drama—retributive justice. The sterner passions alone are appealed to, and the language is replete with bold metaphor and gigantic hyperbole. Venus and her inspirations are excluded; the charms of love are unknown: but the gods—vast, majestic, in shadowy outline, and in the awful sublimity of power-pass before and awe the beholder. [Footnote: see Grote's "History of Greece," Chap. lxvii.] Says a prominent reviewer: ...
— Mosaics of Grecian History • Marcius Willson and Robert Pierpont Willson

... That we may not be accused of plagiarism, we acknowledge ourselves indebted for the hyperbole contained in the last two lines of these introductory stanzas, to an original recommendation for a proper display of rapture, as contained in the following couplet by one Peter Ker, wherein he very humanely invites all the vessels belonging to Great Britain to strand themselves out ...
— Real Life In London, Volumes I. and II. • Pierce Egan

... referred to, is one of the best pictures of the ancienne noblesse in literature, one which—to reverse the contrast just made—annihilates Dickens's caricature thereof in A Tale of Two Cities. The single-handed defence of La Tourgue by "L'Imanus" has of course a good deal of the hyperbole which began with Quasimodo's similar act in Notre-Dame; but the reader who cannot "let himself go" with it is to be pitied. Nowhere is Hugo's child-worship more agreeably shown than in the three ...
— A History of the French Novel, Vol. 2 - To the Close of the 19th Century • George Saintsbury

... 'Religion ist in der Thiere Trieb,' says Wallenstein; 'the very savage drinks not with the victim, into whose breast he means to plunge a sword.' Danton was warned that Robespierre was plotting his arrest. 'If I thought he had the bare idea,' said Danton with something of Gargantuan hyperbole, 'I would eat his bowels out.' Such was the disdain with which the 'giant of the mighty bone and bold emprise' thought of our meagre-hearted pedant. The truth is that in the stormy and distracted times of politics, and perhaps in all times, contempt is a dangerous luxury. ...
— Critical Miscellanies (Vol. 1 of 3) - Essay 1: Robespierre • John Morley

... his hair—never were such! Why, when he spoke—it was positively music! When he smiled—it was heaven! His smile, to Sophia, was one of those natural phenomena which are so lovely that they make you want to shed tears. There is no hyperbole in this description of Sophia's sensations, but rather an under-statement of them. She was utterly obsessed by the unique qualities of Mr. Scales. Nothing would have persuaded her that the peer of Mr. Scales existed among men, ...
— The Old Wives' Tale • Arnold Bennett

... pay her debts," said Toombs on one occasion. "If she does not, I will pay them for her!" This piece of hyperbole was softened by the fact that on two occasions, when the State needed money to supply deficits, Toombs with other Georgians did come forward and lift the pressure. Sometimes he talked in a random way, but responsibility always sobered him. He was impatient of ...
— Robert Toombs - Statesman, Speaker, Soldier, Sage • Pleasant A. Stovall

... falsely, for the Kata sayeth sooth," is Komayt's saying. It is an emblem of swiftness: when the brigand poet Shanfara boasts, "The ash-coloured Katas can drink only my leavings, after hastening all night to slake their thirst in the morning," it is a hyperbole boasting of his speed. In Sind it is called the "rock pigeon" and it is not unlike a grey partridge ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 4 • Richard F. Burton

... most of the States in their constitutions declare that men have a natural right to acquire, possess, and protect property, and Kentucky and Arkansas go to the length of saying that the right of property is "before and higher than any constitutional sanction"—which latter statement is a legal hyperbole—Oklahoma in its recent constitution, North Carolina, and Missouri state only that men have a natural right to the enjoyment of the fruits of their own labor; on the other hand there are recent intimations coming from Federal sources that individualism or private property rights, at least, ...
— Popular Law-making • Frederic Jesup Stimson

... said his mother, with a smile that showed how she prized the love that lay beneath what she took for its hyperbole. The praise even which one cannot accept is sweet from a true mouth. 'If that is all your new gift can do, it won't make a ...
— The Princess and the Curdie • George MacDonald

... policy has been shaped. Something was required to divert public attention, to employ the idle, to popularise your Highness's rule, and, if it were possible, to enable him to reduce the taxes at a blow and to a notable amount. The proposed expedition - for it cannot without hyperbole be called a war - seemed to the council to combine the various characters required; a marked improvement in the public sentiment has followed even upon our preparations; and I cannot doubt that when success shall follow, the effect will ...
— Prince Otto • Robert Louis Stevenson

... It is not hyperbole to say that Booker T. Washington was a great American. For twenty years before his death he had been the most useful, as well as the most distinguished, member of his race in the world, and one of the most useful, as well as one of the most distinguished, of American ...
— Booker T. Washington - Builder of a Civilization • Emmett J. Scott and Lyman Beecher Stowe

... never looked more beautiful than she did at this instant. We ought not, therefore, to condemn the maid of the inn for her hyperbole, who, when she descended, after having lighted the fire, declared, and ratified it with an oath, that if ever there was an angel upon earth, she ...
— The History of Tom Jones, a foundling • Henry Fielding

... the laws; it partook, in a very dingy manner, of adventure. Were it known, it was the sort of exploit that disconsidered a young man for good with the more serious classes, but gave him a standing with the riotous. And yet Colette's was not a hell; it could not come, without vaulting hyperbole, under the rubric of a gilded saloon; and, if it was a sin to go there, the sin was merely local and municipal. Colette (whose name I do not know how to spell, for I was never in epistolary communication with that hospitable outlaw) was simply an unlicensed ...
— Tales and Fantasies • Robert Louis Stevenson

... as well as other courts, swarm with its followers; at which places they appear in as high a style of fashion, that is of effrontery, as even the fools by whom they are aped, or the lawyers and statesmen themselves by whom they are defended. This I own is a bold assertion; and is perhaps a hyperbole! Yes, yes: it is comparing mole hills to mountains. ...
— The Adventures of Hugh Trevor • Thomas Holcroft

... justice of this last shaggy simile, even Senator Hanway could not deny its formidable side. A grizzly, whether in fact or in hyperbole, is no one good to meet. There is a supremacy of the primitive; when the natural and the artificial have collided the latter has more than once come limping off. Our soldiers cannot make the Indians fight their fashion; the Indians make the soldiers ...
— The President - A novel • Alfred Henry Lewis

... was "free from vice, because he had no occasion to employ it." "Such gifts," said the turbulent Bishop Atterbury of him, "I did not think had been the portion of any but angels." After this it is no hyperbole to say, as Earle does of the contemplative man, "He has learnt all can here be taught him, and comes now to heaven ...
— Microcosmography - or, a Piece of the World Discovered; in Essays and Characters • John Earle

... the cabin window." It was thus that a certain North Country shipowner once summarised his career while addressing his fellow-townsmen on some public occasion now long past, and the sentence, giving forth the exact truth with all a sailor's delight in hyperbole, may well be taken to describe the earlier life-stages gone through by the author of this book. The experiences acquired in a field of operations, that includes all the seas and continents where commerce may move, live, and have its ...
— Windjammers and Sea Tramps • Walter Runciman

... confusion at having been led into hyperbole. But he took her shoulders in his huge but kindly hands, somewhat to her alarm—for, in her world, she was not accustomed to gigantic males laying unceremonious ...
— Jaffery • William J. Locke

... not thin, he thought; she was slender; in love with love, and loverless; and delicate in spite of her strength. Her foibles, exaggerated by her manner, took his fancy; for youth sets out with a love of hyperbole, that infirmity of noble souls. He did not so much as see that her cheeks were faded, that the patches of color on the cheek-bone were faded and hardened to a brick-red by listless days and a certain amount of ailing health. His imagination fastened at once on ...
— Lost Illusions • Honore De Balzac

... lofty thoughts; which shall give visible form and life to the abstract ideas of our written constitutions; which shall confer upon virtue all the strength of principle and all the energy of passion; which shall disentangle freedom from cant and senseless hyperbole, and render it a thing of such loveliness and grandeur as to justify all self-sacrifice; which shall make us love man by the new consecrations it sheds on his life and destiny; which shall force through the thin partitions of conventialism and expediency; ...
— The Knickerbocker, or New-York Monthly Magazine, February 1844 - Volume 23, Number 2 • Various

... the countries of Africa; that I wrote in a book accounts of everything I saw, and on my return, would present this book to the Sultan, who would reward me with a high rank—perhaps even that of Grand Vizier. The Orientals deal largely in hyperbole, and scatter numbers and values with the most reckless profusion. The Arabic, like the Hebrew, its sister tongue, and other old original tongues of Man, is a language of roots, and abounds with the boldest metaphors. Now, ...
— The Lands of the Saracen - Pictures of Palestine, Asia Minor, Sicily, and Spain • Bayard Taylor

... mind (Still the phrase is wide or scant), To take leave of thee, GREAT PLANT! Or in any terms relate Half my love, or half my hate: For I hate, yet love, thee so, That, whichever thing I show, The plain truth will seem to be A constrain'd hyperbole, And the passion to proceed More from a ...
— Pipe and Pouch - The Smoker's Own Book of Poetry • Various

... August, the scarlet lobelia, the cardinal-flower, is to be found. Never was cardinal so robed. If Herbert's rose, in poetic hyperbole, with its "hue angry and brave, bids the rash gazer wipe his eye," certainly such a bed of lobelia as I once saw on the road to "Rollo's Camp" was anything but what the Scotch would call "a sight for sair een." For the space of a dozen or twenty yards grew a patch of absolutely nothing ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 27, January, 1860 • Various

... navigators, before venturing to face the unknown, had waited to be provided with vessels fit to make long voyages, the progress of research would have been much slower than was the case. It sounds like hyperbole to say that, when pitch and planks failed, these gallant seamen stopped their leaks with hope and ardour; but really, something like that ...
— The Life of Captain Matthew Flinders • Ernest Scott

... then this hyperbole seem too much for an eastern poet, though some commentators of name strain hard in this place for a new construction, ...
— The Poetical Works of Edward Young, Volume 2 • Edward Young

... say of a woman, that she only does not destroy where she passes. She should revive; the harebells should bloom, not stoop, as she passes. You think I am rushing into wild hyperbole? Pardon me, not a whit—I mean what I say in calm English, spoken in resolute truth. You have heard it said—(and I believe there is more than fancy even in that saying, but let it pass for a fanciful one)—that flowers only flourish rightly in the garden of some one who ...
— Harvard Classics Volume 28 - Essays English and American • Various

... all his disparagement of these abortive spats, knew full well that any one of them held the makings of a deadly duel and that Jose's lurid threats were no mere Latin hyperbole. He realized that the red-crowned bowman ruled his crew exactly as any of the old-time buccaneers whom he resembled had governed their free-booting gangs—by the iron hand; and that, though these men sailed no Spanish Main and flew no black flag, ...
— The Pathless Trail • Arthur O. (Arthur Olney) Friel

... to be outdone in courtesy, Rex warned him not to put too large charges of powder for fear the barrel should burst—being so old. A caution which I believe to be totally unnecessary, and a mere hyperbole of depreciation—as Peter seemed perfectly to understand! He told me it was "The first present I ever receive from a gentleman. Well—well—I never forget it, the longest day I live." The graceful candour with which he said, "I am very thankful ...
— Juliana Horatia Ewing And Her Books • Horatia K. F. Eden

... David in the gloomy wood that day and uncrown himself for him? It was just this reason: It was because he loved him. Again and again the story had said that Jonathan loved David as his own soul. I thought it was a mere hyperbole at first. I thought it might be a kind of poetic way of putting it, but it was only sober truth. And David spoke sober truth in that noble and manly lamentation when he said, "Thy love was wonderful to me, passing the love ...
— Sermons on Biblical Characters • Clovis G. Chappell

... pretty bit of hyperbole which involves a contradiction in terms. An unheard melody is no melody at all, and as soon as we have music in which a number of singers or instrumentalists are employed, the taste, feeling, and judgment ...
— How to Listen to Music, 7th ed. - Hints and Suggestions to Untaught Lovers of the Art • Henry Edward Krehbiel

... become immortal! Alas for the paucity of such immortals under so common circumstances; their number should be legion! That a fool may occasionally write interesting matter we know; but that a man should write a literary classic, graced by arrangement, selection, expression, is not even paradox but hyperbole run mad. The truth is, Macaulay had no eye for such a complex character as Boswell. Too correct himself, too prone to the cardinal virtues and consistency, to follow one who, by instinct, seemed to anticipate Wendell Holmes' ...
— James Boswell - Famous Scots Series • William Keith Leask

... towards the sweet and innocent Betty Errington with her mouth like crumpled rose-petals, her ivory and peach-blossom complexion, her soft contralto voice, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, as per foregoing bald description, and as per what can, by imaginative effort, be pictured from the Pujolic hyperbole, by which I, the unimportant narrator of these ...
— The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol • William J. Locke



Words linked to "Hyperbole" :   figure of speech, hyperbolic, trope, figure, hyperbolize, image



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