comparisons are odious

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comparisons are odious

To draw an analogy is offensive; one cannot compare apples and oranges fairly. This term was already so well known in Shakespeare’s time that he was able to make a pun—more accurately a malapropism—on it and be sure it would be perfectly understood (“Comparisons are odorous,” says Dogberry in Much Ado about Nothing, 3.5). The earliest reference recorded is from about 1430, and there are equivalents in French, Italian, and numerous other languages.
See also: comparison
References in classic literature ?
(and perhaps I might have the reader's pardon if it were wholly omitted), that while I held the odious vermin in my hands, it voided its filthy excrements of a yellow liquid substance all over my clothes; but by good fortune there was a small brook hard by, where I washed myself as clean as I could; although I durst not come into my master's presence until I were sufficiently aired.
Next morning, very early, long before Fyne had to start for his office, the "odious personage" turned up, not exactly unexpected perhaps, but startling all the same, if only by the promptness of his action.
Fyne rigid in her place with the girl sitting beside her--the "odious person," who had bustled in with hardly a greeting, looking from Fyne to Mrs.
It was a short pause of perfect silence, and then that "odious creature" (he must have been really a remarkable individual in his way) struck out into sarcasm.
She turned to the "odious person" with the same determination.
"The better reason for my not being conversant with the slang of the bank, which is here dinning in my ears from morning to night; that noise of jingling crowns, which are constantly being counted and re-counted, is odious to me.
Before the house of Queen's Crawley, which is an odious old- fashioned red brick mansion, with tall chimneys and gables of the style of Queen Bess, there is a terrace flanked by the family dove and serpent, and on which the great hall-door opens.
I came down in your dear muslin gown (about which that odious Mrs.
But the idea of writing evoked the thought of a place to write in, of shelter, of privacy, and naturally of his lodgings, mingled with a distaste for the necessary exertion of getting there, with a mistrust as of some hostile influence awaiting him within those odious four walls.
There was something of naive, odious, and inane simplicity about that unfrequented tiny crumb of earth named after Jean Jacques Rousseau.
I must restrain and swallow back my feelings still: there was the bell--the odious bell for the schoolroom dinner; and I must go down with a calm face, and smile, and laugh, and talk nonsense--yes, and eat, too, if possible, as if all was right, and I was just returned from a pleasant walk.
How shall we travel about together without being odious the one to the other?'
It will be sufficient here to remark, that until satisfactory reasons can be assigned to justify an opinion, that the federal government is likely to be administered in such a manner as to render it odious or contemptible to the people, there can be no reasonable foundation for the supposition that the laws of the Union will meet with any greater obstruction from them, or will stand in need of any other methods to enforce their execution, than the laws of the particular members.
However, after the first shock had subsided, the custom grew less odious in my eyes, and I soon accustomed myself to the sight.