Allegories • Allegorize • Extended Metaphors • Figurative Speech • Metaphor
Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible
Allegory. Strictly speaking, a device which seeks to communicate abstract ideas and concepts in pictorial terms derived from the objective world. As such, metaphors, parables, and certain types of illustrations are “allegory.” “Allegory” may also refer to a literary form employed for a part or the whole
The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, Revised
Allegory [Heb. māšal] (Ezk. 17:2; 20:49; 24:3); AV PARABLE; NEB PARABLE, “song of derision”; [GK. allēgoróō < állo agoreúō—‘say something other (than what the words normally imply)’] (Gal. 4:24); ALLEGORICALLY [GK. pneumatikó̄s] (Rev. 11:8);AV SPIRITUALLY; NEB “in allegory.” The word “allegory”
Tyndale Bible Dictionary
ALLEGORY* A method of interpretation (“allegorizing”), especially biblical interpretation, that seeks to find a deeper moral, theological, spiritual meaning behind the words and literal imagery of the text.Allegory began among the ancient Greeks, for whom the writings of such epic poets as Hesiod and
The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia
ALLEGORY. A “prolonged metaphor” (longer and more detailed) in which objects or events are understood as symbolic or typical of meanings in another realm of discourse. An allegory is distinguished from a parable in that an allegory makes each detail representative of the truth or meaning, whereas a parable
Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible
AllegoryA narrative which uses symbolic figures and actions to suggest hidden meanings behind the literal words of the text. It is similar to riddle and parable genres, which use figurative language and images to convey a truth hidden behind the literal meaning of the words. The word “allegory” originated
Eerdmans Bible Dictionary
Allegory (Gk. allēgoría, from állo and agoreúo “to say something other [than normally intended by the words spoken]”). † A figure of speech, often an extended metaphor, frequently employed in Scripture.
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church
allegory. In Christian exegesis, one of the traditional ways of interpreting Scripture in distinction to the literal or historical sense. The Greek word, ἀλληγορία, belongs to ancient literary theory and is defined as ‘speaking one thing and signifying something other than what is said’ (Heraclitus,
Smith’s Bible Dictionary
Allegory, a figure of speech, which has been defined by Bishop Marsh, in accordance with its etymology, as “a representation of one thing which is intended to excite the representation of another thing.” (“A figurative representation containing a meaning other than and in addition to the literal.” “A
The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary
ALLEGORY (Gk. allegoreō). The term occurs only once (Gal. 4:24), “This is allegorically speaking,” NASB; “these things are an allegory,” KJV; “these things may be taken figuratively,” NIV. “To allegorize” means to express or explain one thing under the image of another. “St. Paul is here declaring,
Easton’s Bible Dictionary
Allegoryused only in Gal. 4:24, where the apostle refers to the history of Isaac the free-born, and Ishmael the slave-born, and makes use of it allegorically.Every parable is an allegory. Nathan (2 Sam. 12:1–4) addresses David in an allegorical narrative. In the eightieth Psalm there is a beautiful
Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Dictionary
ALLEGORY — a symbolic representation of a truth about human conduct or experience. The word “allegory” is found only once in the King James Version. In Galatians 4:24 it translates the Greek verb allegoreo, which means to say something different from what the words normally imply. The NKJV translates
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
ALLEGORY<al’-e-go-ri>: The term allegory, being derived from [ἄλλο ἀγορεύειν, allo agoreuein], signifying to say something different from what the words themselves imply, can etymologically be applied to any figurative form of expression of thought. In actual usage in theology, the term is employed
Key passages
Eze 17:2

“Son of man, tell a riddle and quote a proverb to the house of Israel,

Eze 20:49

Then I said, “Ah, Lord Yahweh, they are saying about me, ‘Is he not posing a parable?’ ”

1 Co 5:6–8

Your boasting is not good. Do you not know that a little leaven leavens the whole batch of dough? Clean out the old leaven in order that you may be a new batch of dough, just as you are unleavened. For Christ our Passover has been sacrificed. So then, let us celebrate the feast, not with the old …

Ga 4:21–31

Tell me, you who are wanting to be under the law, do you not understand the law? For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the female slave and one by the free woman. But the one by the female slave was born according to human descent, and …

Re 11:8

And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which is called symbolically Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.