involving, invoking, or intended to be taken as a metaphor, something used symbolically to represent something else, suggesting a comparison or resemblance: Our foreign policy blunder has given the insurgents a metaphorical green light to engage in violent tactics in pursuit of their imperial ambitions.
- Also met·a·phor·ic [met-uh-fawr-ik, -for-] /ˌmɛt əˈfɔr ɪk, -ˈfɒr-/ .
- met·a·phor·i·cal·ly, adverb
- met·a·phor·i·cal·ness, noun
- hy·per·met·a·phor·ic, hy·per·met·a·phor·i·cal, adjective
- non·met·a·phor·ic, non·met·a·phor·i·cal, adjective
- sem·i·met·a·phor·ic, sem·i·met·a·phor·i·cal, adjective
- sub·met·a·phor·ic, sub·met·a·phor·i·cal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use metaphorical in a sentence
As the ceasefire was announced, Peter Beinart asked me what Jerusalemites felt as we exited our own metaphoric bunkers.
This should reframe recent “failures” you experienced as opportunities for achieving greater goods, both real and metaphoric.
On the contrary, you now discover innumerable ways to market your wares, be they real or metaphoric.
The Solar Eclipse, Wednesday, meanwhile, brings welcome news regarding real estate, real or metaphoric.
If not, you will have created a more conducive environment for realizing next move(s), both real and metaphoric.
After thousands of years the lines of metaphoric advance are still shown, and in many cases actually retained in the meaning.Instigations | Ezra Pound
Frederick's nerves were in a state of tension, not in a mere metaphoric sense.Atlantis | Gerhart Hauptmann
This and other apocryphal stories illustrate the evolution of Haggadoth out of metaphoric allusions.The Expositor's Bible: The Book of Daniel | F. W. Farrar
I should say to the ordinary bookbuyer, in metaphoric language, Avoid the kickshaws and stick to the solids!By-ways in Book-land | William Davenport Adams
Metaphoric strength of expression will burst even from vulgar and illiterate minds when they are agitated.