Reference > Quotations > Frank J. Wilstach, comp. > A Dictionary of Similes
Frank J. Wilstach, comp.  A Dictionary of Similes.  1916.
  Our ideas, like orange-plants, spread out in proportion to the size of the box which imprisons the roots.
            —Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  Ideas are for the most part like bad sixpences and we spend our lives in trying to pass them off on one another.
            —Samuel Butler (1835–1902)
  Ideas are like shadows—substantial enough until we try to grasp them.
            —Samuel Butler (1835–1902)
  An idea, like a ghost (according to the common notion of ghosts), must be spoken to a little before it will explain itself.
            —Charles Dickens
  A fixed idea is like a gimlet; every year gives it another turn. To pull it out the first year is like plucking out the hair by the roots; in the second year, like tearing the skin; in the third, like breaking the bones; and in the fourth, like removing the very brain itself.
            —Victor Hugo
  An idea is like a meteor; at the critical moment, the confused meditations which have preceded it open a way, and a spark flashes forth…. These flashes are generated in the conscience in its states of cloud and darkness.
            —Victor Hugo
  Our ideas, like pictures, are made up of lights and shadows.
            —Joseph Joubert
  A fixed idea is like the iron rod which sculptors put in their statues. It impales and sustains.
            —Hippolyte Adolphe Taine
  Ideas are like beards; men do not have them until they grow up.

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