26. Idiom and metaphor as a translation problem
A translation of a well-understood metaphor in one culture may be wrong if we apply it to another culture. Metaphors are not ornaments they are used to make the utterance precise and effective. (e.g.:spring has soft hands or The soft winds of spring) It produces an agreeable impression upon us. When we translate metaphors we should think about the functions of this device. Though no metaphor can be translated literally. (e.g.: ветер гладит щеки = the wind kisses one’s cheeks; орудия палят = revolvers bark, gun machines spit)
Metaphor is a figure of speech in which a word or phrase literally denoting one kind of object or idea is used in place of another to suggest a likeness or analogy between them. Metaphors are comparisons that show how two things that are not alike in most ways are similar in one important way. Unlike similes that use the words “as” or “like” to make a comparison, metaphors state that something is something else. We may speak about:
• extended or telescoping metaphor: (“The teacher descended upon the exams, sank his talons into their pages, ripped the answers to shreds, and then, perching in his chair, began to digest”).
• implied metaphor: (“John swelled and ruffled his plumage (versus John was a peacock”).
• mixed metaphor: (“The movie struck a spark that massaged the audience's conscience”).
• dead metaphor: (Tying up loose ends, a submarine sandwich, a branch of government).
Simile is a comparison of two unlike things, typically marked by use of "like", "as", "than", or "resembles". ("the fog was thick like pea soup", "she was as quick as a whip", "madder than a bull).
Idioms are several words which meaning can’t be predicted on the basis of any of those words separately. There can be different types of them.
1. Phraseological unities
There are 4 groups of phraseological unities according to the principles of translation:
• Phraseological unities, which have Russian counterparts with the same meaning and similar images. They can often be traced to the prototype: biblical, mythological, sayings etc. (*Not all that glitters is gold.)
• Phraseological unities, which have the same meaning but express it through a different image: (Too many cooks spoil that broth – У семи нянек дитя без глазу)
      The equivalents having a local color should be avoided (To carry coals to New Castle” – заниматься пустым делом)
• Phraseological unities, which have no equivalents in Russian and are rendered by explanation. (Little pitchers have long ears – дети любят слушать разговоры взрослых)
• Phraseological unities, which have word equivalents: (shake a leg – отплясывать; hang fire – медлить, мешкать)
2. Phraseological fusions. They are usually interpreted. (*To show the white feather – проявить себя трусом; *To dine with duke Humphrey – остаться без обеда)
Sometimes these fusions have equivalents in the TL (*Red tape – волокита, бюрократия)
The meaning of phraseological fusion may often be rendered by a series of alternative phrases.
(*to get the whole hog – делать что-либо основательно; доводить до конца; не останавливаться на полумерах; идти на все) 
3. Phraseological collocations. (*To take part, to throw a glance, to take one’s temperature)