Today was a study of Parables in Matthew. There was some discussion of the differences of a Parable and Allegory. That led me to wonder the subtle differences in analogy, metaphor, simile, hyperbole and fable.
Parable - a succinct, didactic story, in prose or verse, which illustrates one or more instructive lessons or principles. A parable is a type of analogy
Fable - fables employ animals, plants, inanimate objects, or forces of nature as characters
Allegory - allegory in its most general sense is an extended metaphor
Analogy - is a cognitive process of transferring information or meaning from a particular subject (the analogue or source) to another (the target)
Metaphor - a figure of speech that identifies something as being the same as some unrelated thing for rhetorical effect, thus highlighting the similarities between the two. While a simile compares two items, a metaphor directly equates them, and does not use "like" or "as" as does a simile
Simile - directly compares two things through the explicit use of connecting words (such as like, as, so, than, or various verbs such as resemble).
Hyperbole - the use of exaggeration as a rhetorical device or figure of speech. In rhetoric
So a Parable is like a puzzle that compels the reader to extend the simple to the complex.