An original simile to describe the architecturally solid seat of learning in Dublin, set in and setting off the relative ignorance of the surrounding city – I liked this use of a jewellery metaphor to make the contrast.  

The grey block of Trinity on his left, set heavily in the city’s ignorance like a dull stone set in a cumbrous ring…

Source: James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1964), p. 179

Photo credit: starbright at pixabay

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