In this ambitious and wide-ranging text, Andrew Goatly explores the language of metaphor. Combining insights from relevance theory and functional linguistics, he provides a powerful model for understanding how metaphors work in real communicative situations, how we use them to communicate meaning as well as how we process them. Examining the distinction between literal and metaphorical language, Goatly surveys the means by which metaphors are realized in texts and locates the interpretation of metaphor in its social context. The Language of Metaphors is enlivened by the choice, variety and humor of its real examples which are taken from a wide variety of genres including conversation, popular science, advertising, news reports, novels and poetry. Supplemented with exercises and a suggested reading list, this book will provide students of language, psychology and literature with an invaluable guide to understanding precisely how metaphors function.