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asked 2019-02-02 09:45:23 -0400

sgthompson gravatar image

If someone says that he/she are “quite close to getting there” (achieving something i.e., completing a project in terms of a journey) is the phrase “quite close” used in a metaphorical sense?

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answered 2019-02-05 21:25:13 -0400

hamad.alazary gravatar image

Yes, it is considered by most scholars as a type of metaphor. Such a phrase is believed by many to be motivated by a conceptual metaphor. The idea here is that an abstract concept, like ACHIEVEMENT, is being described through a concrete concept, such as a JOURNEY. There are numerous cases of this, where seemingly literal language is actually metaphorical. See Metaphors We Live By (Lakoff & Johnson, 1980) for more examples of conceptual metaphors.

  • Hamad Al-Azary
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answered 2019-02-06 00:00:11 -0400

Yes, it is.

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answered 2019-02-07 09:17:26 -0400

Gerard Cheshire gravatar image

Yes: If physical distance is the literal meaning of 'quite close', then figurative distance is the metaphorical meaning of 'quite close'.

There is some overlap though, as the words 'farther' is correctly used to indicate physical distance, and the word 'further' is correctly used for figurative distance. However, many people use the two words incorrectly.

The reason for the overlap is that some figurative examples are physical too. For example, if one is 'quite close' to finishing a book, then the writing has a physical end as well as a figurative end.

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Asked: 2019-02-02 09:45:23 -0400

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Last updated: Feb 07 '19