Need Help?

Get in touch with us


Allegory: Meaning, Types and Examples

May 16, 2024

Artists and writers often critique society or teach moral lessons through their write-ups. Even though it might be challenging to do so, however, without getting heavy-handed. Allegory is the optimal solution to this dilemma. Allegory lets creators and writers talk about something without directly talking about the particular subject or adding hidden messages and layers to their work.

Understanding Allegory

A narrative story conveying an abstract, complex or difficult message is called an allegory. It is achieved through storytelling. Rather than elaborating or explaining the virtues of persistence and pitfalls of arrogance, the writer describes a beautiful tale, conveying the same message.


Humans easily get attracted towards good stories. Have you ever realized how fiction covers the maximum shelf space in libraries or bookstores? Stories are heart-touching and compelling. By writing a story about difficult or big and abstract ideas, allegory benefits humans’ inclination toward stories.

At times, the writer wants to convey a dangerous message, talking about it explicitly. Under such circumstances, allegory results in creating a distance between the message and the writer. One such example of this kind of allegory is George Orwell‘s 1945 novel Animal Farm. In this allegory, the author talks about farm animals, expressing his dissent towards the Russian government, which is a risky subject to discuss straightforwardly.


Types of Allegory

Allegory is the commonly sorted write-up by the tradition from where it emerges: classical, biblical or modern. Sometimes, it is also divided by the literary device employed, such as symbolic allegory or personification allegory.


Biblical: Biblical allegory refers to the stories from the Bible that present a particular message or re-elaborate lessons from the Bible. These tales usually come up as write-ups of good versus evil.


Classical: Classical allegories are stories that emerged from the period of ancient Rome and Greece.

Modern: As allegory is a powerful tool to grab the attention of a reader, it is still employed by writers to elaborate on modern situations or concerns.


Literary Device

Symbolic: Under symbolic allegory, the characters hold an autonomous narrative outside of the messages being conveyed.

Personification: A personification allegory is a basic story that includes characters transparently representing types or concepts.


Examples of Allegory

One of the attractive features of allegory is that writers use it to implement their intended message instead of making blunt moral statements. They express their messages through witty dialogues, moving scenes, vivid imagery, or inventive characters. Some of the allegory examples include:

Beatrice and Virgil by Yann Martel

Beatrice and Virgil is an allegory for the suffering and monumental pain experienced by victims of the holocaust. Henry is the main character and a novelist teaching the book about the holocaust, but it gets rejected by his publisher. Later, he receives a playscript in the mail. Henry finds out that it came from some taxidermist, whose name was also Henry, who introduced him to two taxidermy animals, Virgil, a monkey and Beatrice, a donkey.


Animal Farm by George Orwell

Animal Farm, written by George Orwell, stands as a political allegory pointing to the Russian Revolution of 1917 and representing the rise of communism. This allegory outlines different classes in society by petting animals. All the animals seek to overthrow their human owner, Mr. Jones. Mr. Jones was represented as the last Russian tsar, Nicolas II. The people rose up against Nicholas II and the Bolsheviks, who were ultimately killed along with this family in the Russian Revolution of 1917.

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis

The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, written by CS Lewis, stands amongst religious allegories. The story involves four siblings who enter through a wardrobe into a magical land called Narnia, where only the winter season remains and Christmas never falls due to a magical spell cast by the evil white witch. The four siblings, along with the talking lion, Aslan, encounter the witch. However, one of the siblings, Edmond, betrays his siblings and Aslan by being tempted by the witch. Hence, he represents Judas, the betrayer. Aslan sacrifices himself, like Jesus, for Edmond’s sins and is resurrected from the dead.



In an allegory, the writer gets a chance to show creativity along with conveying a crucial message. With allegory, writers employ personification, magic, and time travel if they are suitable for the story. They get a space to be extremely creative, adding complex characters through indirect characterization. The most important thing is that the story has its own stand,  underlying messages very clearly.

To study different types of allegory as per your interest or to learn how to write an allegory, grab a seat at the Turito online learning platform and write your own allegory with the help of experts.


Name the 2 main forms of allegory.

Fables and Parables are the 2 main forms of allegory.

What do you understand by a moral allegory?

A piece of film or literature that has an ethical message or a subtle moral is a moral allegory.

Is allegory non-fictional?

No, allegory is fictional.



Relevant Articles

Capella University

Capella University Admissions 2024: Admissions Procedure and Acceptance Rate

Are you excited to get started on your study abroad …

Capella University Admissions 2024: Admissions Procedure and Acceptance Rate Read More »

card img

Fairleigh Dickinson University Admissions 2024: Admissions Procedure and Acceptance Rate

Many international students, especially many Indian students, are welcomed by …

Fairleigh Dickinson University Admissions 2024: Admissions Procedure and Acceptance Rate Read More »

George Mason University acceptance rate GPA requirements

George Mason University Admissions 2024: Admissions Procedure and Acceptance Rate

Want to step abroad for higher studies? What better place …

George Mason University Admissions 2024: Admissions Procedure and Acceptance Rate Read More »

SAT Time Management

SAT Time Management

The SAT is a classic challenge in itself. You need …

SAT Time Management Read More »


Study Abroad

card img

With Turito Study Abroad

card img

With Turito Study Abroad

card img

Get an Expert Advice from Turito

card img

Get an Expert Advice from Turito


card img

With Turito CAP.


card img

With Turito Coding.


card img

With Turito RoboNinja


card img

1-on-1 tutoring for the undivided attention