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Re: Grammatical term. Figure of speech.

Posted by Bob on June 22, 2005

In Reply to: Grammatical term. Figure of speech. posted by Samantha on June 22, 2005

: Does anyone know what the grammatical term is for the following phrases: "She died of boredom" or "he laughed his head off." Clearly the subjects didn't literally do that. I remember learning it in English, but can't remember for the life of me. It's like metaphor, but that isn't it ... please help if you can.

Laughing your head off is hyperbole, but I'm going to have to think about dying of boredom ... because I believe it's possible to die of boredom, literally. I've been to Nebraska. I've seen "Tristan und Isolde." I've listened to insurance salesmen. I've stood in line at the Department of Motor Vehicles. True, I'm still alive, but maybe because I left Tristan at the first intermission, after only six weeks of immobile singing.