Many sayings, idioms, and quotes exaggerate a specific feature of a person to emphasize the chosen feature. For example, the statement “he is as tall as a tree” equates the person’s height to a tree through the use of a simile or a metaphor, This statement is an example of a hyperbole.
“I have not seen you in ages” is a commonly used hyperbole that people use when they meet someone who they haven’t met in a long time. People consider this example as an exaggeration because people use the word “ages” to denote a long time. You can replace the word “you” in the hyperbole with other pronouns, proper nouns, or common nouns, depending on the context the person uses it.
Example statement: Nina hasn’t seen her grandparents in ages because she was too busy with her work.
“I have a million things to do.” is another commonly used hyperbole that people use when they want to indicate how the said person is busy with their tasks. This is a hyperbole because the word “million” is an exaggeration of the number of things the person has to do. You can replace the pronoun “I” with other pronouns depending on the tone and context of the sentence.
Example statement: Don’t bother me today because I have a million things to do.
“If I can’t buy that dress, I will die!” is an example of hyperbole that people use to denote the feeling of wanting a specific thing and equating the thing as a need. People consider this as hyperbole because even if the person does not get the object they want, they will not die. You can modify the object and pronoun in the hyperbole to fit the context, like replacing the singular noun with a plural noun.
Example statement: Mom! If I can’t buy that dress, I will surely die!
When talking about age, this is the one of the most used hyperbole. This hyperbole will emphasize the age of your grandparent to the age of the hills, which are over millions of years in existence. You can change the common noun and possessive noun of this hyperbole to perfectly fit the statement or speech you will create.
Example statement: I’m very sure my grandma is older than the hills. Have you seen the way she walks?
The hyperbole above is a commonly used phrase people use to signify someone who ate a lot of food. This is because the hyperbole exaggerates the amount of food the person ate for a meal. You can manipulate the pronoun, meal-time, and specificity of the food to better fit the context of your statement.
Example statement: Alexa is full, she probably ate a ton of food for lunch.
“The speech was never-ending.” is a common hyperbole people use to indicate an action or an event that takes a lot of time and is boring. The word “never-ending” is an exaggeration because all events and actions will end at some point. The noun of this hyperbole can be swapped for a different event or action as long as it will fit the context of the hyperbole.
Example statement: I swear it felt like the speech was never-ending. I almost slept through it all.
The sun is a giant ball of fire and gas that will incinerate anything that goes near the celestial body. This hyperbole exaggerates the feeling a person feels when they sleep in a place that is too hot or has too much sunlight.
Example statement: The location of my bed is so uncomfortable it feels like I’m sleeping beside the sun.
People usually define people who are 6ft and higher as tall. This hyperbole exaggerates the person’s height with the quantifier million, which is an impossible number. You may replace the pronoun you will use in this hyperbole to fit the context you use it.
Example statement: John, my childhood friend, had an extreme growth spurt. He is now a million times taller than before.
When a person drives, they need to keep in mind various elements that will affect their safety. People commonly use this hyperbole to describe someone who is driving very fast. This is hyperbole, as no one can drive 1,000 miles per hour.
Example statement: My father drives 1,000 miles per hour upon knowing that my mother was rushed to the hospital.
Teachers often assign their students homework and assignments to do when they get home, which results in them being busy. The hyperbole exaggerates the quantity of homework they have to do.
Example statement: Mom, stop annoying me! I have a ton of homework to do today.
A normal person cannot have a million pairs of shoes hidden away in their closet or shoe cabinet. People commonly use this hyperbole to emphasize the number of things a person has. You can change the word “shoes” in this hyperbole to better fit the context of the sentence.
Example statement: Stop buying shoes, Imelda! I swear you have a million pairs of shoes at home already.
People use the “I don’t have two cents to spare” hyperbole to indicate that they do not have enough money to lend to anyone. You can choose to modify the hyperbole by changing the pronoun used in the statement to better fit the context. This hyperbole emphasises the person’s inability to use or lend money by exaggerating the amount of money the person does not have.
Example statement: I can’t do this anymore, ok? I don’t have two cents to spare, so count me out.
This is another hyperbole that people commonly use to describe bad weather that has been going on for a couple of days. In this hyperbole, people exaggerate the length of the rain to 40 days and 40 nights, which goes beyond the calendar days of a single month. People can use this to emphasize the length of the bad weather.
Example statement: I swear, it seems to have been raining for 40 days and 40 nights here.
A lot of people live in a world where they can avail of or obtain food before they have a chance to starve to death. In the proper context, this hyperbole can indicate and emphasize the hunger the person feels at the time.
Example statement: We’ve been walking for hours; I swear I will probably starve to death before we get to the restaurant.
A hyperbole is a statement or a sentence that exaggerates a specific characteristic or quantity of an object to emphasize a point or provide a humorous critique. The person can also use hyperbole to obtain an emotional response from their readers or listeners. A lot of hyperboles take the form of metaphors like similes, juxtapositions, antithesis, etc.
A well-used hyperbole will not only entertain your readers or listeners, but you will also emphasize a specific message you want to convey. If you need a reference for your hyperboles, you can use the list of hyperbole examples above.
Begin by determining the point you want to make through your usage of hyperbole. Be sure to think about the context, tone, and theme of the writing or speech, as hyperboles tend to lean more toward the casual side of writing or speaking.
There are two ways to use hyperbole. You can use hyperbole by searching for a list of commonly-used hyperboles to act as a reference.
Another way to use hyperbole is through one’s active creation of one. Start by outlining a sentence and selecting a quality or a quantity you want to exaggerate. Be sure that the chosen quality or quantity is related to the point you want to make.
If you are writing, you can use hyperbole as a way to drive a point or as a setup for an ironic or satirical occurrence or event. If you are using it in a speech, be sure to provide a good and appropriate set-up or consequence of the exaggeration.
Hyperbole is a literary device or a figure of speech that allows the author to use exaggerated situations and language to create an impossible statement. People tend to find hyperboles funny because of the exaggerated tones and themes the person uses in hyperboles. Not only do hyperboles have a funny tone, but people use hyperboles to create an emphasis on a specific point through humor. In conclusion, people use hyperboles to create a point through the humorous use of tone and theme.
Yes, people can use hyperboles to create a satirical or ironic situation or emphasis a satirical or ironic point. For example, a person can say out loud “I am so hungry, I could eat a horse.”, then a whole cooked horse lands in front of the person. This is because hyperboles use exaggerated language and words to critique or create a specific point, which a person can leverage in a satirical or ironic direction. Therefore, hyperboles present an easy way to create a satirical or ironic situation.
The objective and subject of the speech will determine the person’s ability to use and integrate hyperboles into one’s speech. A person can use jokes and humor in a casual setting as a rhetorical device to improve the rapport between the speaker and the audience. In a professional and more business-like setting, it is best to reduce one’s use of jokes and humor in the speech as it can undermine the serious tone. Since hyperbole uses exaggeration and humor to make a point, it is best to limit one’s use of this rhetorical device in a serious speech.
Hyperbole is a figure of speech where a person exaggerates a specific detail in their statement to emphasize or critique a point. Like an idiom, a well-used and strategically placed hyperbole will entertain the audience and improve their interest in the text or the speech. Therefore a budding writer or a speaker needs to know and improve their skills by learning how to engage their audience using hyperboles.