Related Analysis Pages
Simile in Common Sense
Simile Examples in Common Sense:
I. Of the Origin and Design of Government in General, with Concise Remarks on the English Constitution
"Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence..." See in text (I. Of the Origin and Design of Government in General, with Concise Remarks on the English Constitution)
This functions as both a simile and an allusion to the Bible. In the Garden of Eden, before Eve ate the apple, both she and Adam were nude, but after their collective loss of innocence they put on clothes as did all subsequent generations. With this comparison Paine is stating that government obscures what is pure, and is built upon a community's lost innocence.
III. Thoughts on the Present State of American Affairs
"The least fracture now will be like a name engraved with the point of a pin on the tender rind of a young oak..." See in text (III. Thoughts on the Present State of American Affairs)
With this simile Paine reinforces the importance of maintaining "continental union, faith and honor," because the slightest problem therein will impact the country further into the future.