Poetry Terms

Information Station Other Poetry Terms Onomatopoeia


What is Onomatopoeia?

Onomatopoeia is a word that imitates the sound or suggests the source of the sound that it describes. It is commonly used in comic strips as action sounds and in nursery rhymes.

Examples of using Onomatopoeia:

Buzz - for a bee

Hiss - for a snake

Moo - for a cow

Woof - for a dog

Pow - for a punch

Whoosh - for a rocket taking off

Tick-tock - for a clock

In a poem or nursery rhyme they are used to entertain:

Old MacDonald had a farm,
Ee i ee i oh!
And on that farm he had some chickens,
Ee i ee i oh!
With a cluck-cluck here,
And a cluck-cluck there
Here a cluck, there a cluck,
Everywhere a cluck-cluck
Old MacDonald had a farm
Ee i ee i oh!

Onomatopoeia is used to help the reader hear and be involved in the writer's written word, by describing the action with a sound.


Why don't you try writing a poem using Onomatopoeia and enter it into one of our Poetry Competitions.