What are some examples of onomatopoeia?


Quick Answer

Some examples of onomatopoeia are "splash," "slam," "jingle," "gurgle" and "mumble." Onomatopoeia are words that sound like what they mean. Writers use them in literature to bring sound into their work.

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Full Answer

Additional examples of this literary device are "honk," "thump," "clang," "boom" and "thump." "Whine," "shush," "growl" and "whack" are others. Many instances of onomatopoeia are from sounds animals make, such as "bark," "meow," "moo" and "bleat." Others are from the sounds occurring when something hits the ground, and still more are from sounds humans make with their mouths, such as "yawn" and "whisper."

Poets make particular use of onomatopoeia to bring life into their poems. In the poem "The Bells," Edgar Allan Poe uses words that imitate the sound of the bells when he says "How they clang, and clash, and roar!...By the twanging/ And the clanging...." Readers are able to imagine the loud, frantic sounds that bells sometimes make just by reading the poem.

The advertising industry makes use of onomatopoeia to make products stick in the minds of consumers. Advertising for the cereal Rice Krispies is a good example. The planting of the words "snap," "crackle" and "pop" in the minds of listeners had people fascinated with listening for the sounds coming from the cereal in their bowls.

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