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Wednesday, October 5, 2011


When a writer repeats the same beginning sound in a series of two or more words, that writer is using the literay device called alliteration.  Poets and other writers use alliteration to grab the reader's attention, to bind certain phrases together, or to create a lyrical effect in their writing.

Famous examples of alliteration include many tongue twisters, such as:

Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers...

She sells seashells by the seashore.

And poems like this one:

Once upon a midnight dreary,
while I pondered, weak and weary,

Over many a quaint and curious
volume of forgotten lore,

While I nodded, nearly napping,
suddenly there came a tapping,

As of someone gently rapping,
rapping at my chamber door.

"'Tis some visitor," I muttered,
"tapping at my chamber door --
Only this, and nothing more."

~ from "The Raven" by Edgar Allen Poe

Here is an example that I wrote.  As you can see, alliteration can get a bit silly when you overuse it.  (But I think it's fun!):

The wind whipped wildly through the branches
of the willow tree, whistling and whispering
against the window.

Now it's your turn.  Try writing a sentence or two using alliteration, and then please share it here ~ I'd love to see what you come up with!

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