The smart way to improve grades

Comprehensive & curriculum aligned

Affordable pricing from £10/month

Exploring Poetry 2: 'An Emerald is as Green as Grass' and 'The Miller'

In this series of worksheets, students can explore different aspects of poetry.

'Exploring Poetry 2: 'An Emerald is as Green as Grass'
and 'The Miller'' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 3

Curriculum topic:  Reading

Curriculum subtopic:  Poetic Convention Awareness

Difficulty level:  

down

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

This worksheet is designed to help you explore poetry. It is based on a poem by Christina Rossetti (1830–1894) called 'An Emerald is as Green as Grass'.

 

 

**********************

 

An Emerald is as Green as Grass  

 

An emerald is as green as grass;

A ruby red as blood; 

A sapphire shines as blue as heaven;

A flint lies in the mud. 

A diamond is a brilliant stone,

To catch the world's desire;

An opal holds a fiery spark;

But a flint holds fire.

 

**********************

This poem contains many similes to reflect upon the nature of different stones.

Match the stone with its correct comparison to make the simile.

Column A

Column B

an emerald is as green
as grass
a ruby red
as blood
a sapphire shines as blue
as heaven

Read the poem again and select from the options below how the similes are effective.

 

 

**********************

 

An Emerald is as Green as Grass  

 

An emerald is as green as grass;

A ruby red as blood; 

A sapphire shines as blue as heaven;

A flint lies in the mud. 

A diamond is a brilliant stone,

To catch the world's desire;

An opal holds a fiery spark;

But a flint holds fire.

 

**********************

The similes connect the stones to nature.

The similes emphasise the colours of the stones.

The similes demonstrate that you can find stones everywhere.

The poem describes the brightness and value of lots of precious stones but why is the dirty flint more valuable?

It can be polished up.

It is rare.

It can create fire.

Similes have been used since poetry has been written. Here is an extract of one of the oldest examples of poems we have. It is an extract from Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales which was written in medieval times and describes a miller.

 

 

**********************

 

The Miller

 

The miller was a stout churl, be it known,

Hardy and big of brawn and big of bone;

Which was well proved, for when he went on lam

At wrestling, never failed he of the ram.

He was a chunky fellow, broad of build;

He'd heave a door from hinges if he willed,

Or break it through, by running, with his head.

His beard, as any sow or fox, was red,

And broad it was as if it were a spade.

Upon the coping of his nose he had

A wart, and thereon stood a tuft of hairs,

Red as the bristles in an old sow's ears;

His nostrils they were black and very wide.

A sword and buckler bore he by his side.

His mouth was like a furnace door for size.

He was a jester and could poetize,

But mostly all of sin and ribaldries.

He could steal corn and full thrice charge his fees;

And yet he had a thumb of gold, begad.

A white coat and blue hood he wore, this lad.

A bagpipe he could blow well, be it known,

And with that same he brought us out of town.

 

**********************

 

 

Which description below best describes the miller?

a shy and timid man who loves reading

a larger-than-life strong man who loves wrestling

a weak and sickly man

Chaucer uses similes to help the listener imagine the miller.

Reread it again tick the two things that are described using similes:

 

 

**********************

 

The Miller

 

The miller was a stout churl, be it known,

Hardy and big of brawn and big of bone;

Which was well proved, for when he went on lam

At wrestling, never failed he of the ram.

He was a chunky fellow, broad of build;

He'd heave a door from hinges if he willed,

Or break it through, by running, with his head.

His beard, as any sow or fox, was red,

And broad it was as if it were a spade.

Upon the coping of his nose he had

A wart, and thereon stood a tuft of hairs,

Red as the bristles in an old sow's ears;

His nostrils they were black and very wide.

A sword and buckler bore he by his side.

His mouth was like a furnace door for size.

He was a jester and could poetize,

But mostly all of sin and ribaldries.

He could steal corn and full thrice charge his fees;

And yet he had a thumb of gold, begad.

A white coat and blue hood he wore, this lad.

A bagpipe he could blow well, be it known,

And with that same he brought us out of town.

 

**********************

beard

eyes

nose

mouth

Chaucer uses powerful images in his similes to help us picture the miller. Match the image with the part of the miller it describes.

Column A

Column B

beard
as big as a furnace door
mouth
as big as a spade

How do the similes add to our impression of the miller?

They emphasise his size and strength.

They show he is a metal worker.

They demonstrate his skills.

Match the following similes with what they are describing:

Column A

Column B

They are like torch-lights in the night sky.
kittens' fur
They stand tall like guards looking over the valle...
stars
They are as soft as newly spun silk.
mountains
Like an explosion from a cannon it reverberated ar...
thunder
  • Question 1

This poem contains many similes to reflect upon the nature of different stones.

Match the stone with its correct comparison to make the simile.

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

an emerald is as green
as grass
a ruby red
as blood
a sapphire shines as blue
as heaven
EDDIE SAYS
An emerald is as green as grass;
A ruby red as blood;
A sapphire shines as blue as heaven;
  • Question 2

Read the poem again and select from the options below how the similes are effective.

 

 

**********************

 

An Emerald is as Green as Grass  

 

An emerald is as green as grass;

A ruby red as blood; 

A sapphire shines as blue as heaven;

A flint lies in the mud. 

A diamond is a brilliant stone,

To catch the world's desire;

An opal holds a fiery spark;

But a flint holds fire.

 

**********************

CORRECT ANSWER
The similes emphasise the colours of the stones.
EDDIE SAYS
The similes are effective because they emphasise the colours of the stones.
  • Question 3

The poem describes the brightness and value of lots of precious stones but why is the dirty flint more valuable?

CORRECT ANSWER
It can create fire.
EDDIE SAYS
The flint is the most precious because it can create fire.
  • Question 4

Similes have been used since poetry has been written. Here is an extract of one of the oldest examples of poems we have. It is an extract from Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales which was written in medieval times and describes a miller.

 

 

**********************

 

The Miller

 

The miller was a stout churl, be it known,

Hardy and big of brawn and big of bone;

Which was well proved, for when he went on lam

At wrestling, never failed he of the ram.

He was a chunky fellow, broad of build;

He'd heave a door from hinges if he willed,

Or break it through, by running, with his head.

His beard, as any sow or fox, was red,

And broad it was as if it were a spade.

Upon the coping of his nose he had

A wart, and thereon stood a tuft of hairs,

Red as the bristles in an old sow's ears;

His nostrils they were black and very wide.

A sword and buckler bore he by his side.

His mouth was like a furnace door for size.

He was a jester and could poetize,

But mostly all of sin and ribaldries.

He could steal corn and full thrice charge his fees;

And yet he had a thumb of gold, begad.

A white coat and blue hood he wore, this lad.

A bagpipe he could blow well, be it known,

And with that same he brought us out of town.

 

**********************

 

 

Which description below best describes the miller?

CORRECT ANSWER
a larger-than-life strong man who loves wrestling
EDDIE SAYS
The miller is a larger-than-life strong man who loves wrestling.
  • Question 5

Chaucer uses similes to help the listener imagine the miller.

Reread it again tick the two things that are described using similes:

 

 

**********************

 

The Miller

 

The miller was a stout churl, be it known,

Hardy and big of brawn and big of bone;

Which was well proved, for when he went on lam

At wrestling, never failed he of the ram.

He was a chunky fellow, broad of build;

He'd heave a door from hinges if he willed,

Or break it through, by running, with his head.

His beard, as any sow or fox, was red,

And broad it was as if it were a spade.

Upon the coping of his nose he had

A wart, and thereon stood a tuft of hairs,

Red as the bristles in an old sow's ears;

His nostrils they were black and very wide.

A sword and buckler bore he by his side.

His mouth was like a furnace door for size.

He was a jester and could poetize,

But mostly all of sin and ribaldries.

He could steal corn and full thrice charge his fees;

And yet he had a thumb of gold, begad.

A white coat and blue hood he wore, this lad.

A bagpipe he could blow well, be it known,

And with that same he brought us out of town.

 

**********************

CORRECT ANSWER
beard
mouth
EDDIE SAYS
His beard and eyes are described using similes.
  • Question 6

Chaucer uses powerful images in his similes to help us picture the miller. Match the image with the part of the miller it describes.

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

beard
as big as a spade
mouth
as big as a furnace door
EDDIE SAYS
His beard is as big as a spade.
His mouth is as big as a furnace door.
  • Question 7

How do the similes add to our impression of the miller?

CORRECT ANSWER
They emphasise his size and strength.
EDDIE SAYS
The spade and the furnace door emphasise his size and strength.
  • Question 8

Match the following similes with what they are describing:

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

They are like torch-lights in the...
stars
They stand tall like guards looki...
mountains
They are as soft as newly spun si...
kittens' fur
Like an explosion from a cannon i...
thunder
EDDIE SAYS
They are like torch-lights in the night sky. = stars

They stand tall like guards looking over the valley. = mountains

They are as soft as newly spun silk. = kittens' fur

Like an explosion from a cannon it reverberated around the valley. = thunder
---- OR ----

Sign up for a £1 trial so you can track and measure your child's progress on this activity.

What is EdPlace?

We're your National Curriculum aligned online education content provider helping each child succeed in English, maths and science from year 1 to GCSE. With an EdPlace account you’ll be able to track and measure progress, helping each child achieve their best. We build confidence and attainment by personalising each child’s learning at a level that suits them.

Start your £1 trial

Start your trial for £1