The DICT Development Group
1 definition found
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :
Allegory \Al"le*go*ry\, n.; pl. Allegories. [L. allegoria, Gr.
?, description of one thing under the image of another; ?
other + ? to speak in the assembly, harangue, ? place of
assembly, fr. ? to assemble: cf. F. all['e]gorie.]
1. A figurative sentence or discourse, in which the principal
subject is described by another subject resembling it in
its properties and circumstances. The real subject is thus
kept out of view, and we are left to collect the
intentions of the writer or speaker by the resemblance of
the secondary to the primary subject.
2. Anything which represents by suggestive resemblance; an
3. (Paint. & Sculpt.) A figure representation which has a
meaning beyond notion directly conveyed by the object
painted or sculptured.
Syn: Metaphor; fable.
Usage: Allegory, Parable. "An allegory differs both from
fable and parable, in that the properties of persons
are fictitiously represented as attached to things, to
which they are as it were transferred. . . . A figure
of Peace and Victory crowning some historical
personage is an allegory. "I am the Vine, ye are the
branches" [--John xv. 1-6] is a spoken allegory. In
the parable there is no transference of properties.
The parable of the sower [--Matt. xiii. 3-23]
represents all things as according to their proper
nature. In the allegory quoted above the properties of
the vine and the relation of the branches are
transferred to the person of Christ and His apostles
and disciples." --C. J. Smith.
Note: An allegory is a prolonged metaphor. Bunyan's
"Pilgrim's Progress" and Spenser's "Fa["e]rie Queene"
are celebrated examples of the allegory.
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