All Creatures Great and Small Metaphors and Similes
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Written by Connie Skibinski
"There was no blood or sweat anywhere. The man in the picture had just finished an excellent lunch and had moved next door to do a bit of calving just for the sheer pleasure of it, as a kind of dessert." (Simile) (Ch.1, p.7)
This simile conveys the ridiculousness of the image, portraying it as incredibly unrealistic. Herriot mocks the idyllic image of a country vet he found in the obstetrics book. Through the simile, he illustrates how the image of the man "in the middle of a gleaming floor" is a contrivance, as real veterinary work is far more gruesome and bloody. The simile "as a kind of dessert" clearly illustrates that this situation is not realistic, in reality, being a vet is more difficult than the image makes it appear to be. Through this, the reader learns of some of the struggles involved with being a country vet.
"The words set a mournful little bell tolling inside me." (Metaphor) (Ch. 1, p.10)
This metaphor clearly emphasizes Herriot's dismay at being mistreated by a condescending farmer. The farmer questioned Herriot's skill and knowledge, believing his lack of experience to be proof of his inadequacies. This upsets Herriot, who knows that he is capable and competent, and wishes people would stop underestimating him. The somber metaphor thus conveys Herriot's frustration towards prejudiced farmers.
"Tricki Woo was a Pekingese and the apple of his mistress' eye." (Metaphor) (Ch.13, p. 94)
This metaphor and cliche illustrates Mrs Pumphrey's devoted affection towards her dog, Tricki Woo. It emphasises how she elevates her dog from the status of pet to child, treating him like a son. This is also seen in how she lavishly bestows her pet with expensive gifts and luxury food. This simple metaphor proides great insight into Mrs Pumphrey's eccentric characterisation, and her close connection to Tricki Woo.
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