Like frost and flowers

Like frost and flowers

An alternative alliteration for describing people as being like chalk and cheese.  Feel free to use it to inject some variety into your phrasing. ‘Him and th’ old Squire fit one another like frost and flowers.’ Source: George Eliot, Adam Bede...
Like a stealing sunbeam

Like a stealing sunbeam

This is as near as upright Mrs. Poyser gets to admitting she’s pleased as punch by a compliment just received.  I liked the alliterative ‘stealing sunbeam’. ‘… but a quiet complacency overspread her face like a stealing sunbeam…’ Source:...
Give me Irwine every time

Give me Irwine every time

A fine pair of metaphors for the differing effects of two men’s company – no doubt with whom I’d rather spend an evening, chatting in front of the fire. ‘Mr Irwine was like a good meal o’ victual, you were better for him without thinking on it,...
Ribbon when the colour’s gone

Ribbon when the colour’s gone

Mrs Poyner offering up her pithy view of many wives in the neighbourhood, during a good-natured discussion with her husband.  He settles their difference of opinion by assuring her he married well. ‘The poor draggle-tails o’ wives you see, like bits o’ gauze...
Frivolity folly

Frivolity folly

This describes pretty Hetty utterly unprepared, and incapable of becoming prepared, for mature, meaningful relationships.  It’s also an early intimation of the compassion and succour Dinah will later bring her. ‘Like a child hugging its toys in the...
Beware the Bartle blade

Beware the Bartle blade

Bartle has much learning and little patience with fools or slouchers.  As an example of that cutting tongue, here is what he thinks of university as a means to educate people:  ‘He says college mostly makes people like bladders – just good for nothing but...
As poor as…

As poor as…

Never thought of rats as being poor, but I like the simile, more compelling than the standard ‘as poor as a church mouse’.  At least the mouse has a big house. ‘If I were as poor as a rat…’ Source: George Eliot, Adam Bede (Harmondsworth:...
Wishy-washy Arthur

Wishy-washy Arthur

Mrs Irwine’s all too insightful summary of Arthur’s strength of character. ‘She thinks your lady-love will rule you as the moon rules the tides.’ Source: George Eliot, Adam Bede (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1985 (1859)), p. 216 Photo credit: fapro1...
As hard as…

As hard as…

Mrs Poyser has strong and generally accurate opinions about the people around her, and she nails Hetty’s character in a few lines.  I love pebbles, but not hearts that have their hardness. “It’s my belief her heart’s as hard as a pibble (sic).” See another...

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