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What Are Clichés? (with Examples)
A cliché is an overused and worn-out expression used to convey a popular thought or idea.
Examples of Clichés
The ball is in your court.
Think outside the box.
As useful as a lead balloon.
Every cloud has a silver lining.
Types of Clichés
There are various types of clichés. For example:
A proverb is a short, well-known saying which states a general truth or a piece of advice. For example:
- A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
- A leopard cannot change its spots.
An idiom is commonly used expression whose meaning does not relate to the literal meaning of its word. For example:
- I am over the moon.
- You have a Sword of Damocles hanging over you.
- I'll take any port in a storm.
A catchphrase is a well-known term, especially one that is associated with a particular famous person. For example:
- "Come on down!" (The Price Is Right)
- "Yabba dabba doo!" (Fred Flintstone)
- "You're fired!" (Donald Trump or Alan Sugar from The Apprentice)
A simile is a figure of speech which compares one thing with another to create an analogy
. For example:
- This is about as much use as a chocolate teapot.
- He drinks like a fish.
A metaphor is a figure of speech which states one thing is another to create an analogy
. For example:
- That will put the final nail in the coffin.
- I am banging my head against a brick wall here.
Overused and Worn-out Expressions
Remember, a cliché is a worn-out expression. It is one that has lost its effectiveness through over-usage. Not all proverbs, idioms, catchphrases, similes, and metaphors are clichés.
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