Life at college where I enrolled in the modern art course was nothing like I expected.

My understanding is 'like' in both below sentences are same meaning with the above one.

a. At last he saw something in the darkness that looked like two balls of fire.

b. There is something child-like about Marry; she always seems so innocent.

Am I correct?

  • Hi, and welcome to English Language & Usage. Your suspicion is correct. What does your research reveal?
    – rajah9
    Commented May 24, 2020 at 10:41
  • Look up "simile". It's kinda like a metaphor.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented May 24, 2020 at 12:35
  • The speaker had formed in advance a certain idea of how life at college was going to be. In reality it was nothing like that idea (did not resemble it). Commented May 24, 2020 at 12:48
  • And remember that old haiku: A smile / Is like a simile / But without the "i".
    – Hot Licks
    Commented May 24, 2020 at 16:14

1 Answer 1


How about "similar to"?

Basically, it is a comparison. You're comparing if two things are similar. In the first sentence, you're comparing the life that you experienced against your expectations and they turned out to be very much different.

In the dark, he something that looked similar to two balls of fire.

Mary is very innocent. Her behavior is similar to that of a child.

Hope this helps. NS

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