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Onomatopoeia


Daedalus
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An onomatopoeia is a word that imitates a sound. These are often animal sounds, and sometimes animals get even named after their own sound, but of course it's not just limited to animals.

It's important to know that different languages can use different onomatopoeias for the same sound. For example, in English we would say a cow makes a 'moo' sound, but in Dutch, cows are said to make a 'boo' sound.

Some examples: woof, cuckoo, tick, boom, boing, ka-ching. :)

Do you know of any more, and how they are different in English and in other languages?

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Yes, onomatopoeia words can be lots of fun, to pronounce and even to see on the page.  I agree, lots of them refer to animal sounds. I find it interesting how some of them, in that way, don't really come close to the actual sound. 

For instance, for "dog" in English, it's "bow-wow."  It's a far cry from the actual sound.  But "woof, woof" is a little better.  The crowing rooster sound is "cock-a-doodle-do" which sounds more comical than accurate. 

I think the "cat" sound, "meow" comes pretty close.  Likewise "moo" for cows, as you mentioned. 

Also, before we had Twitter, we had birds that would "tweet."  :)  And we would say they were "twittering" away up in the trees.  We also had the cartoon character "Tweety" before Twitter!

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  • 2 weeks later...

There are actually onomatopoeia for famous songs, particularly songs with guitar. Like:

dun dun dun, dun dun dun, dun dun dun, dun dun dun

dun dun dun, dun dun dun, dun dun dun

That's the breakdown in Domination by Pantera, and one of the more simple ones I could think of.

Also, there are things like "dadum tsh" for a drum rimshot, "wah wah" or "wow wow" for a wah pedal, and more.

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  • 3 weeks later...

There is an example for onomatopoeia in English for virtually any kinetic action when two objects meet. It's quite an extensive language in this area. Here are the ones I can think of off the top of my head: Crash, smash, bang, drip, drip-drop, screech, rip.

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There are actually onomatopoeia for famous songs, particularly songs with guitar. Like:

dun dun dun, dun dun dun, dun dun dun, dun dun dun

dun dun dun, dun dun dun, dun dun dun

That's the breakdown in Domination by Pantera, and one of the more simple ones I could think of.

Also, there are things like "dadum tsh" for a drum rimshot, "wah wah" or "wow wow" for a wah pedal, and more.

That's actually quite funny. First because I love this song and second because I would say dö dö dö instead of dun dun dun.

"An onomatopoeia is a word that imitates a sound"

Like omnomnom? Omnomatopoeia?

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  • 2 weeks later...

I always think of my high school English teacher when I think of onomatopoeia. She would always bring up the word "tic tac" when trying to teach us the lesson. She said that the brand of mints was the perfect example.

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  • 4 weeks later...

There are so many instances of onomatopoeia other than animals sounds, too! Some are words that explain sounds:

Boom! Splat! Pow! Wam!

Others are nouns or verb named after the sound they make:

Clap, slap, burp, crack

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There is no limit to onomatopoeia I think. We can create our own as long as they sound similar to the things we're mimicking. They are fun to use and wacky at the same time. Whenever I see one, I'll have the impression of lightheartedness.

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