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Generation Date: 10/16/2007


Generated By: Albert Deep

Figurative Language
1.

James was shivering. His body felt raw, as if he'd had the skin peeled off it. . . . He rubbed his
arms to try to get some feeling back into them, and the raised goose bumps made them feel as
rough as sandpaper.
If it was this cold out of the water, what was it going to be like in it? Well, there was only one
way to find out.
It was half an hour before afternoon lessons and he was standing on a low diving board at
Ward's Mead, peering at the water, which looked like . . . soup. . . . Freezing-cold soup.
"Come on, then," he said out loud. "Just do it."
He pulled back his arms, took a deep breath and flung himself forward. When he entered the
water it was like being hit by a cricket bat. He was stunned by the cold, and for a moment, he
couldn't move, but then he came alive, clawed his way to the surface and gasped. All his limbs
were aching, and his throbbing head felt numb. The only way to stay in the water and stop
himself from jumping out was to swim. He thrashed across the Mead to the other side and
fought the urge to get out and run back to his room. After a moment's hesitation, he forced
himself round and swam back to the other side.
adapted from Silverfin by Charlie Higson
Which of the following lines contains an example of hyperbole?
A. He rubbed his arms to try to get some feeling back into them...
B. He pulled back his arms, took a deep breath and flung himself forward...
C. His limbs were aching and his throbbing head felt numb...
D. His body felt raw, as if he'd had the skin peeled off it

2.

The Trail of the Meat


Dark spruce forest frowned on either side the frozen waterway. The trees had been stripped
by a recent wind of their white covering of frost, and they seemed to lean toward each other,
black and ominous, in the fading light. A vast silence reigned over the land. The land itself was a
desolation, lifeless, without movement, so lone and cold that the spirit of it was not even that of
sadness. There was a hint in it of laughter, but of a laughter more terrible than any sadness-a
laughter that was mirthless as the smile of the Sphinx, a laughter cold as the frost and partaking
of the grimness of infallibility. It was the masterful and incommunicable wisdom of eternity
laughing at the futility of life and the effort of life. It was the Wild, the savage, frozenhearted
Northland Wild.
adapted from White Fang, by Jack London
In the reading selection above, the phrase "Dark spruce forest frowned" has which of
the following effects?
A. It
B. It
C. It
D. It

makes the forest seem angry and menacing.


gives the reader information about the characters.
introduces the story with some humor.
exaggerates how scary the terrain was .

She shivered, despite the heat of the hearth, and glanced again toward the sunny rectangle of the
cabin door. No one was there, not a shadow. But she felt that same uneasiness that had returned to
her several times this morning: a sense that if she had looked a second sooner there would have

been a figure in the doorway.


It was not the nature of Mary Draper Ingles to be afraid in the daytime. Sometimes in the deep
wilderness nights, when the wolves wailed and the owls conspired high on the Blue Ridge east of the
valley, when the dying fire made shapes move on the ceiling and the restless sleeping children
rustled their corn-shuck mattresses, Mary Ingles would feel frightened. But seldom was she fearful in
bright daylight like this, when the valley was familiar and peaceful and the locusts unreeled their
eternal dry shrills under the summer sun.
Mary turned back to the cookfire. Its heat baked her sweaty face. The little black iron stewpot with
the rabbit in it was almost bubbling over now. She pulled it across the iron arm a little, moving it away
from the hottest coals, so that the stew might simmer the afternoon away and be at its tenderest
when William came back from the fields. The old clock at the far end of the room ticked slowly.
Mary went out of the door of the cabin, preceded by her swollen belly into the sunny fresh air.
The moment her gaze fell over the settlement, she realized that what she was dreading was about
to happen:
Indians were running crouched and swift toward every cabin in the settlement.
adapted from Follow the River by James Alexander Thom
3. Which of the following statements from the passage demonstrates the use of
foreshadowing?
A. But she felt that same uneasiness that had returned to her several times this
morning...
B. She pulled it across the iron arm a little, moving it away from the hottest
coals...
C. The little black iron stewpot with the rabbit in it was almost bubbling over now.
D. Sometimes in the deep wilderness nights, when the wolves wailed and the owls
conspired...

Because the Night


Each drop of rain that hit the windshield sounded like safety pins falling onto glass. They almost
seemed to pop. The cold from the outside pushed itself against the windows fogging the glass. Matty
and Flora drew pictures of their favorite animals against the glass. Then they played tic-tac-toe. It
was as if they had dipped their fingers in clear ink and drew on a dirty canvas.
The headlights from the other passing cars shined into the mirrors of their car. The lights behind
them looked like two burning suns boring their way into their car. They shined so bright, they almost
seemed to warm the car.
The lights from the oncoming cars also drew down on their car like lasers pinpointing a line across
the highway. Matty could see things in the car he hadn't seen before. He saw loose change, an old
dinner receipt, a map, even an old pair of gloves he thought he lost. And then all at once, it was gone.
They were alone on the highway. There were no lights behind them or in front of them. Suddenly, the
images on the glass disappeared into the night. The stars even seemed to burn out; Matty and Flora
were alone on the highway. Only the dried images of animals against the windows kept them
company.
adapted from "Because the Night" by c.safos
4. Which of the following sentences from the passage contains imagery?
A. Only the dried images of animals against the windows kept them company.
B. The lights from the oncoming cars also drew down on their car like lasers
pinpointing a line across the highway.

C. He saw loose change, an old dinner receipt, a map, even an old pair of gloves
he thought he lost.
D. The stars even seemed to burn out; Matty and Flora were alone on the
highway.

5. Which of the following sentences from the passage contains imagery?


A. Matty could see things in the car he hadn't seen before.
B. The headlights from the other passing cars shined into the mirrors of their car.
C. Matty and Flora drew pictures of their favorite animals against the glass.
D. The lights behind them looked like two burning suns boring their way into their
car.

6.

Little Miss Peecher, from her little official dwelling-house, with its little windows like the eyes in
needles, and its little doors like the covers of school books, was very observant indeed of the
object of her quiet affections. Love, though said to be afflicted with blindness, is a vigilant
watchman, and Miss Peecher kept him on double duty over Mr. Bradley Headstone. It was not
that she was naturally given to playing the spy--it was not that she was at all secret, plotting, or
mean--it was simply that she loved the unresponsive Bradley with all the primitive and homely
stock of love that had never been examined or certificated out of her.
adapted from Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens
Why does Dickens use the metaphor of a watchman to describe Miss Peecher's love
for Bradley Headstone?
A. Because
B. Because
C. Because
D. Because

Bradley Headstone was a watchman by profession


Miss Peecher was always keeping her eye on the clock
Bradley kept watch over Miss Peecher's house
Miss Peecher was always keeping her eye out for him

Freshman Tera Hadley walked down the steps of her high school. She wanted to make sure she
caught the eye of Mr. Goynes, the chemistry teacher. Mr. Goynes was very selective about the
students in the Chemistry and Physics Club; Tera hoped that he would notice the electron model she
was carrying. She wanted to be in that club more than anything.
Suddenly, Tera slipped on the steps and pitched forward. Her electron model flew out of her
hands. She heard it hit something and smash into a million pieces. Several nearby students laughed
at her mishap. Tera did not want to open her eyes.
Somehow she did. And there was Mr. Goynes, lying unconscious underneath the wrecked
remains of her electron model.
"Somebody call an ambulance! He's out cold!"
Four years later, Tera addressed the Chemistry and Physics Club before the end of the year state
competition.
"Okay guys," Tera said. "If you get nervous during your presentation, just remember your very own
Vice President of the Chemistry and Physics Club slipped on the steps and hit Mr. Goynes on the
head with her electron model. You can't do as bad as me."
The students snickered. Mr. Goynes shifted in his seat and adjusted his tie.
"Right, Mr. Goynes?" Tera said jokingly.
"Right, Tera," he said, rubbing at the raw spot on his bald head where he had been hit by an
electron model four years before.
7. Why does the narrative shift into the future?
A. To show us how crazy Mr. Goynes is
B. To show us that Tera will eventually get into the Chemistry and Physics Club

C. To show us how serious Mr. Goynes' injury really is


D. To show us that Tera will not be allowed into the Chemistry and Physics Club

8. The literary device used in this story is a


A. narration.
B. flashback.
C. flash-forward.
D. flashbulb.

I walked past my dads trophy cabinet without even noticing it, just like I did every day. I knew all
the trophies were priceless. They looked expensive. They were my fathers, and he was proud of
them. He cared for them so much, he made sure that they were safe.
I was on my way out the door and headed for school. I was excited because it was a half-day,
which meant that I would get to come home early and start my spring vacation. Attending school that
day was more ceremonial than anything else. Since it was a half-day, the teachers didnt expect us to
do anything, and we were more than happy to oblige.
When I got home from school that afternoon, I saw that the front door was open. I didnt think
much of it because my dad often aired out the house on warm days. As I walked through the door, I
saw that the glass on the trophy cabinet was shattered.
9. What foreshadows that something might happen to the trophies?
A. it being the day before his spring vacation
B. the narrator's discussion of his dad's trophy cabinet
C. the narrator walking past his dad's trophy cabinet daily
D. teachers not expecting him to work at school

A Blessing
by James Wright
Just off the highway to Rochester, Minnesota,
Twilight bounds softly forth on the grass.
And the eyes of those two Indian ponies
Darken with kindness.
They have come gladly out of the willows
To welcome my friend and me.
We step over the barbed wire into the pasture
Where they have been grazing all day, alone.
They ripple tensely, they can hardly contain their happiness
That we have come.
They bow shyly as wet swans. They love each other.
There is no loneliness like theirs.
At home once more,
They begin munching the young spring grass in the darkness.
I would like to hold the slenderer one in my arms,
For she has walked over to me
And nuzzled my left hand.
She is black and white,
Her mane falls wild on her forehead,
And the light breeze moves me to caress her long ear
That is delicate as the skin over a girl's wrist.
Suddenly I realize

That if I stepped out of my body I would break


Into blossom
adapted from
http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/16944
10. What is one example of an object being personified in the poem?
A. The willows
B. The twilight
C. Tufts of spring
D. Wet swans

11. Wild Geese


1) You do not have to be good.
2) You do not have to walk on your knees
3) for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
4) You only have to let the soft animal of your body
5) love what it loves.
6) Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
7) Meanwhile the world goes on.
8) Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
9) are moving across the landscapes,
10) over the prairies and the deep trees,
11) the mountains and the rivers.
12) Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
13) are heading home again.
14) Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
15) the world offers itself to your imagination,
16) calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting
17) over and over announcing your place
18) in the family of things.
adapted from "Dream Work" by Mary Oliver
What figure of speech does the poet use in line 4?
A. A
B. A
C. A
D. A

simile of fur is used to describe an animal.


metaphor of an animal is used to describe the body.
simile of an animal is used to describe the body.
metaphor of the body is used to describe softness.

At Cape Schanck
By James Lister Cuthbertson
Down to the lighthouse pillar
The rolling woodland comes,
Gay with the gold of she-oaks
And the green of the stunted gums,
With the silver-grey of honeysuckle,
With the wasted bracken red,
With a tuft of softest emerald
And a cloud-flecked sky o'erhead.
Oh, sweet in the distant ranges,

To the ear of inland men,


Is the ripple of falling water
In sassafras-haunted glen,
The stir in the ripening cornfield
That gently rustles and swells,
The wind in the wattle sighing,
The tinkle of cattle bells.
But best is the voice of ocean,
That strikes to the heart and brain,
That lulls with its passionate music
Trouble and grief and pain,
That murmurs the requiem sweetest
For those who have loved and lost,
And thunders a jubilant anthem
To brave hearts tempest-tossed.
That takes to its boundless bosom
The burden of all our care,
That whispers of sorrow vanquished,
Of hours that may yet be fair,
That tells of a Harbour of Refuge
Beyond life's stormy straits,
Of an infinite peace that gladdens,
Of an infinite love that waits.
adapted from
http://www.daypoems.net/poems/891.html
12. What is one example of an object being personified in the poem above?
A. Distant ranges
B. The ocean
C. Cloud-flecked sky
D. The ear

13. What is one example of an object being personified in the poem?


A. The
B. The
C. The
D. The

wind
lighthouse
ripple
burden

Forge and Marty stepped out of their trailer and into the heat of the day. The sun pushed its way
through the overcast clouds and kicked against the backs of the workers. This was the third dig in just
six months, and they were coming up empty again. They had used up the last of their money to fund
this latest dig. If they didn't find the skeleton they were looking for, they would have to get new
funding. That meant begging to rich philanthropists and begging to government agencies who would
rather use money to fund space exploration. No one wanted to fund Earth-bound research.
Forge could taste the grit and sand scratching against his teeth like bee wings. The sweat from his
face trickled into the grooves of his wrinkles and left a black stain against his cheek. He was used to
being dirty and dusty and uncomfortable. He just wasn't used to being unemployed. That prospect
tastes worse than the grit he had to eat when the wind kicked up the sand.
adapted from "The Dig" by By c.safos
14. Which of the following sentences from the passage contains imagery?

A. No one wanted to fund Earth-bound research.


B. If they didn't find the skeleton they were looking for, they would have to get
new funding.
C. Forge could taste the grit and sand scratching against his teeth like bee wings.
D. He was used to being dirty and dusty and uncomfortable.

15. Which of the following sentences from the passage contains imagery?
A. The sun pushed its way through the overcast clouds and kicked against the
backs of the workers.
B. This was the third dig in just six months, and they were coming up empty
again.
C. Forge and Marty stepped out of their trailer and into the heat of the day.
D. That meant begging to rich philanthropists and begging to government
agencies who would rather use money to fund space exploration.

Answers
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.

D
A
A
B
D
D
B
C
B
B
B
B
A
C
A

Explanations
1.

There are many descriptive methods that writers use to convey an idea or feeling.
Hyperbole is one of those methods. Hyperbole is a form of figurative language
that uses exaggeration. To say "his body felt raw" gives the reader some idea of
how the boy felt; but to say it felt like "he'd had the skin peeled off it" is an
exaggerated way to convey the idea more vividly. That is often why hyperbole is
used--to make the description more vivid and easier for the reader to imagine.

2.

The author personifies the forest by saying that it "frowned," the way an angry
person might frown. Even though a forest can't really frown, this figurative
language contributes to the overall description of the setting as a cold, desolate,

unforgiving wilderness. Maybe you've been in bad weather or extreme cold that
feels like nature is angry, even though anger is a human emotion and nature
can't actually be "angry." That is the type of setting the author is trying to
convey.
3.

Look at the passage again. Mary is nervous, and she feels like someone is
watching her. The sentence that says she felt an "uneasiness" tells the reader
that she feels that someone is out there, waiting. The author uses this sentence
to foreshadow what will happen later in the story, when the Indians are moving
toward the cabins.

4.

Imagery is a literary technique in which the author uses rich descriptions that
appeal to the reader's senses. In this sentence, the writer uses a simile to
describe how the headlights looked to Flora and Matty, and the image tries to
appeal to the reader's sense of sight. The author compares the burning of the
lights to lasers.

5.

Imagery is a literary technique in which the author uses rich descriptions that
appeal to the reader's senses. In this sentence, the writer uses a simile to give a
vivid description of lights in the night. He compares the lights to two burining
suns.

6.

The author uses the metaphor of a watchman to represent Miss Peecher's love for
Bradley. A watchman is an old-fashioned term for a security guard--someone
whose job is to keep a close eye on things at all times. This is the author's way of
showing us the kind of love Miss Peecher had for Bradley--one in which she was
always keeping watch, 24 hours a day, even to the point of spying on him.

7.

The story shifts forward into the future to show us how Tera will eventually
become the president of the Chemistry and Physics Club.

8.

After the incident where Tera falls and knocks Mr. Goynes unconscious, the
narrative shifts to the future. This is called a flash-forward.

9.

By focusing on the trophy cabinet, and talking about the fact that the trophies are
priceless and mean a lot to the narrator's father, the author prepares the reader
to expect something involving the trophy cabinet to happen.

10. Personification is a figure of speech in which things are endowed with human
qualities or are represented as possessing human form.
Example: A reference to thunder booming "angrily" personifies thunder by giving
it emotion.
Example: a smiling moon
In this case, the object being personified is the twilight. Twilight can not really
bound (or leap) across the grass, but it can change the way the grass looks as
the day goes into night. "Bounds softly forth" is a stronger choice of word than
"moves" or "comes to the grass."
11. By using the phrase "the soft animal of your body," the poet is saying that the
body is a soft animal. A metaphor is a figure of speech that compares two unlike
things by saying that one thing is the other. Poets and writers often use metaphor
to get you to think about the one object (in this case, the body) as having
characteristics of the other object (a soft animal). In the first part of this poem,
the poet is saying we don't need to try hard; we just need to love what we love.
In this respect, she is saying we should be more like animals, who love what they

love and don't think about it.


12. Personification is a figure of speech in which things are endowed with human
qualities or are represented as possessing human form.
Example: A reference to thunder booming "angrily" personifies thunder by giving
it emotion.
Example: a smiling moon
In this case, the object being personified is the ocean. The ocean cannot really
have a voice that "strikes" people. The ocean has waves that crash on the shore,
but giving the ocean a "voice" allows the author to tell the reader that the ocean
is saying something, that the ocean has a message to get out to the world.
13. Personification is a figure of speech in which things are endowed with human
qualities or are represented as possessing human form.
Example: A reference to thunder booming "angrily" personifies thunder by giving
it emotion.
Example: a smiling moon
In this case, the object being personified is the wind. The wind can't really sigh,
but it can blow. The word "sighing" gives a much better idea of how strong the
wind is blowing than if the author just said, "The wind in the wattle blowing."
14. This sentence uses imagery because it attempts to appeal to the readers sense of
taste and touch. Imagine what bee wings would taste and feel like if they were in
your mouth? They way Forge tastes the dirt makes him think of this image.
15. This sentence contains imagery because it appeals to the reader's sense of touch.
Imagine what it's like on a hot day when the sun beats on your back. You can feel
the heat. This sentence attempts to show how hot the sun was.
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