What is it called when one person calls another something they metaphorically resemble?

What name or word would be given for the examples below, metaphor?

  1. A mother calls her child cat, or tiger
  2. The wife calls her husband “Hey Baby”.
  3. You’re my moon.
  4. A very muscular person might be called “He’s solid”.

Basically there’s extreme likeness to the other object and the person gets called by that name.

But this one turned into a weird argument; I have a black friend and he loves to be in the dark. He likes having lights turned off, so I said to him “… Yeah dark guy.” But this is only following the above examples as well.


When a person is given a name corresponding to an attribute of that person, or a thing is named by something closely associated with it, it’s called “metonymy.” Only the last of your examples seems to be metonymy, however, and even then it’s not an obvious example of it. So I’m not sure if that’s what you’re looking for.

The first three seem to be examples of a “pet name” if it’s regularly used, or a “term of endearment” if it’s used only occasionally. As I understand and use the terms, a pet name is a term of endearment that becomes a sort of private nickname.

(The third is a clear example of metaphor, but I’m guessing you weren’t asking about that.)

Source : Link , Question Author : Noman , Answer Author : Philip Antin

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