Exercise 2 of 10

Try to determine this proverb’s function, frame, and finish.
Expand each section by clicking the “+” to see how well you did.

“Courage is the ladder on
which all the other virtues mount.”

What is the FUNCTION of this proverb?

This is a definition proverb, because it is defining the relationship between courage and virtue.

What FRAME is this proverb built upon?

This proverb is built on a comparison frame because it’s comparing what separates courage from the rest of the virtues.

What FINISH (or finishes) have been applied to this proverb?

This proverb has two finishes:

1) Conviction.  The proverb has a a strong Conviction finish because it is referring to all virtues, as opposed to weaker convictions such as most, some, or few.

2) Wordplay Association. The author uses a clever wordplay by using the word ladder and mount. People mount ladders to rise to different physical heights, while people use virtue to rise to higher ethical ones.

EXTRA CREDIT: What METAPHOR is this proverb built upon?

This proverb is built upon the metaphor: courage is a foundation.  Not only does the author describe it as the foundation of all virtues, but by choosing the word ladder, courage inherits the ability to help people ascend to higher moral characters.