Ickabog Metaphors and Similes

"They had rough voices, which the other Cornucopians imitated, making them sound like hoarse old sheep" (Simile)

This simile appears in the first chapter of The Ickabog when the narrator is describing each of the lands within Cornucopia. By comparing the Marshlander’s voices to "hoarse old sheep", the residents of the rest of Cornucopia have effectively reduced the Marshlanders' worth to that of an animal. This shows how the Marshlanders are looked down upon and disrespected and based on their lack of wealth.

"It was as though each of the king's party was wearing a thick white blindfold." (Simile)

This simile appears when King Fred and his party have sought out the Ickabog in the Marshlands. Because the king forces the party to go into the marsh at night, they end up being surrounded by a thick fog that prevents them from seeing one another. Rowling uses imagery and multiple similes to describe just how thick the fog was. This simile is particularly helpful for a reader to imagine just how terrifying the situation is, since many readers will have worn a blindfold before. This makes the reader empathize more with the people who are panicking due to the situation.

"A brilliant idea flashed into his brain like a lightning strike." (Simile)

Rowling uses the simile of a lightning strike to refer to Lord Spittleworth's ideas multiple times in The Ickabog. This quote is specifically from Chapter 23 when Lord Spittleworth decides to hold a trial for Captain Goodfellow and the other members of the Royal Guard who are being kept in the dungeon and make them admit to treason. Comparing Lord Spittleworth having an idea to a lightning strike emphasizes how quick he is to come up with these wicked ideas, which makes him a more fearful antagonist in the story.

"It was as though a door had flown open inside her mind, a door that she'd been keeping blocked and barricaded for a very long time." (Simile)

This simile is used to describe Mrs. Beamish finally admitting to herself that everything she has secretly suspected about her husband's death, the Ickabog's existence, the Dovetails' disappearance, and the situation throughout Cornucopia may be the truth. Rowling's use of the words "blocked" and "barricaded" show how hard Mrs. Beamish tried to repress these thoughts and feelings.

"Their torn blankets were no match for the freezing air, which bit at every part of them like tiny, sharp-toothed wolves." (Simile)

This simile is from Chapter 50 when Daisy, Bert, Roderick, and Martha are walking from Jeroboam to the Marshlands in an intense winter storm. Rowling compares the air to being bit by wolves to emphasize how painful the experience is and how strong and brave the characters are for continuing their journey. Using wolves as a point of comparison is particularly relevant because wolves are fearsome characters that live in very cold climates.