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You may not have heard “what is alliteration.” However, you might have experienced it somewhere. An alliterative word or phrase is one of the best ways to make your speech or writing inspirational and fun.

We will explain what is alliteration with examples to help you become more creative with words. This article will be your go-to guide for alliteration in speech or writing.

Brief on What is Alliteration
Alliteration occurs when two or more consonant sounds repeat in nearby words or syllables. 

The example precisely states what is alliteration.

Sally sells seashells by the seashore.

In the above alliteration example, we have linked two or more words with the same consonant sound.

It is a literary device that means “letters of the alphabet” and originated from Latin. You can include words with repetitive sounds in sentences or phrases. 

You do not use alliteration with vowels. 

We often use it to emphasise, produce sound effects, and establish a rhythm. 

What does alliteration mean in poetry?Alliterations may emphasise the start of a poem in poetry and significant structural changes in prose. 

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When a sentence uses symmetrical alliteration, it starts and finishes with words with the same consonant sound. Words that begin with the same consonant sounds do not mean alliteration. 

In contrast, their syllables share another consonant sound, much like books between bookends. There is no rule on how many words apart they can be, but you can figure out the alliteration by reading the text loudly. You will understand more once you look at more alliteration examples. Meanwhile don’t forget to explore more details about how many words in a paragraph?

Alliteration, a concept central to the alliteration definition literature, occurs when two or more consonant sounds repeat in nearby words or syllables. This technique is not just about the repetition of sounds; it’s about crafting a specific rhythm or mood in the text. Consider the classic alliteration example: “Sally sells seashells by the seashore.” Here, the repeated ‘s’ sound links the words together, creating a pleasing auditory effect.

This literary device, stemming from the Latin word for “letters of the alphabet,” is often employed to emphasize points, produce sound effects, and establish a rhythmic pattern in writing. Contrary to what some might think, alliteration does not involve vowels but focuses exclusively on consonant sounds. Its use is particularly evident in poetry, where it may highlight the beginning of a stanza or underscore significant structural shifts. In prose, alliteration serves to draw attention to key phrases or concepts.

An interesting aspect of alliteration is its flexibility in terms of placement within the text. For instance, symmetrical alliteration occurs when a sentence starts and ends with words sharing the same consonant sound, akin to bookends framing a collection of books. It’s important to note that mere repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words doesn’t qualify as alliteration; the sounds must recur in a more nuanced manner across syllables or words.

There’s no hard and fast rule about how closely the alliterative words should be placed in the text. Often, the effectiveness of alliteration is best gauged by reading the text aloud. The auditory experience can reveal the rhythmic and emphatic qualities of alliteration. For a deeper understanding, exploring more alliteration examples is beneficial.

As you delve into the nuances of alliteration, don’t miss the opportunity to expand your literary knowledge further. You might find it interesting to explore topics like the difference between a footnote and an endnote, or understand the intricacies of structuring a paragraph and determining how many words it should ideally contain. Each element of writing, from alliteration to paragraph structure, plays a unique role in crafting compelling and effective prose and poetry.

What Are The Three Types of Alliteration?

What Are The Three Types of Alliteration?<br />

There are multiple kinds of alliteration. We can use it in various ways to improve the rhythm and fun of your writing. So, here are the different alliterations.

General Alliteration

Apart from alliteration in poetry definition, the general alliteration is best for a new writer because it is the most common and well-known type of alliteration. 

Usually, this type is a tongue twister. It comprises a series of words arranged by their first vowel. Make a phrase like “Sophie saw a sausage stand,” in which we see the repetition of each word’s first letter and the vowel sound. 

Besides this, you can click here to learn about Narrative Writing Skills.

​Consonance ​

Consonance is used to characterise the repeat of alliterative sounds for consonance at a sentence’s beginning, middle, or end. 

We view alliteration as a form of “consonance.” 

That is because the repeated tone almost always appears at the beginning of a sentence.

Let us see a demonstration of “consonance” with the help of the sentence, “Nimbly; he called the numbers.” The repeated “n” and “m” sounds create both consonance and alliteration.

Assonance ​

It is the repetition of a vowel sound somewhere within a phrase. Experts disagree over whether assonance counts as rhyming, just like with consonance.

However, it is well known that vowel sounds are repeated at the start of words when assonance and alliteration occur.

Example— “His tender heir might bear memory.” The “eh” note can be detected as an assonant in words tender, heir, bear, and memory.

What Is Symmetrical Alliteration?

What Is Symmetrical Alliteration?

It is another type of alliteration. 

In symmetrical alliteration, parallelism repeats the same grammatical construction from one sentence to the next. 

The words at the start and conclusion of a sentence that uses symmetrical feature alliteration all have the same sound of consonant, while the words in the centre all have a distinct consonant sound, much like books between bookends. 

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Difference Between Alliteration, Consonance, and Assonance

Difference Between Alliteration, Consonance, and Assonance<br />

When you encounter repeated letters or phrases in a poem, you might confuse them for alliteration. 

It might be assonance or a different form of consonance. It is easier to compare alliteration, assonance, and consonance. Continue reading to learn how these three differ.

As you know, “what is alliteration.” It is the repetition of the first letter in several words. 

In contrast, assonance involves many words with repeated vowel sounds. Also, consonance is the repetition of consonant sounds in different words. Meanwhile, if you want to know how to cite a poem, you can discover it here.

Yes, it is a fact that alliteration and consonance have similar meanings. But, it is worth noting while consonants can occur anywhere in a word, alliteration only uses the first sound of the consonant in a single word.

Alliteration can use either vowels or consonants, while assonance is mainly a repetitive vowel sound. 

Hence, alliteration differs from assonance and consonance because it is linked directly to the first sound of the consonant in words.

Why Do We Use Alliteration?

Why Do We Use Alliteration?<br />

Alliteration can add interest and make lines simpler to understand. 

Readers are more likely to pay attention and memorise what you are trying to say when your writing engages one’s interest. 

Alliteration adds rhythm and melody to your writing, so poets have used it for ages and will continue to use it. It helps the poem’s continual motion that encourages readers to keep reading. Also, you can discover more here about the online Assignment Help.

Prose, poems, songs, and other genres of literature all use the literary device of alliteration to create the effect. Take some time to read our blog on genre conventions. Alliteration has the following outcomes when used in writing:

  • It might be beneficial to highlight a specific phrase or paragraph for the reader.
  • You can create rhythm by reading aloud.
  • It can help make specific terms or sentences memorable and catchy, sometimes with the same sound or initial rhyme (therefore, alliteration with the same letter often used in brand names like Coca-Cola or Fish Fingers).

Examples of Alliteration

Examples of Alliteration<br />

Knowingly or unknowingly about the word ‘alliteration,’ we use it almost everywhere. If you know it, paying attention to it is easy because it frequently appears in literature, popular culture, and regular communication. Look at these examples here.

Alliterative Name

Alliteration is a literary device that frequently appears in popular culture. 

Several businesses use the alliteration of two or more words in their products and brand names because the human brain likes repetition with consonant or vowel sounds when storing information in long-term memory, such as

  • Peter Parker
  • Dunkin’ Donuts
  • Coca Cola
  • Pay Pal
  • Krispy Kreme

Some of the renowned names using alliterative words are:

  • Mickey Mouse
  • Donald Duck
  • Kim Kardashian
  • Marlin Monroe
  • Ryan Reynolds

Alliterative phrases examples in everyday speech

  • Home sweet home
  • Last laugh
  • Busy as a bee
  • Good as gold
  • Neck and neck

Literature Alliteration Example

English-language literature frequently uses alliteration. 

Using alliteration in longer sentences can take time and effort. However, it significantly affects creative writing, unlike poetry, where shorter lines are more common. 

Some groups of words, even those with different spellings, clearly repeat the same initial sounds in consecutive or closely related phrases as alliteration in the literature.

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The novel The Great Gatsby

“So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past.”

The repetitive “b” sound in this alliteration maintains that something is hitting back when read aloud.

Play— Macbeth

‘Fair is foul, and foul is fair.

Hover through the fog and filthy air.’

This passage uses alliteration to highlight a shabby ambience by using words like foul, fog, and filthy.

Poetic alliteration examples

A few alliterative words are necessary to make your poems more enjoyable to read or when we listen to. It will help your reader grasp the tone. 

Alliteration is a tactic used by artists in poems to arrange words and make patterns in their work. Many well-known authors used alliteration to follow head rhyme in their writings. 

Let’s look at the example of alliteration in the poem:

The Raven

“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,”

The poet Edgar Allan Poe uses alliteration in this section with word pairs like weak/weary, quaint/curious, and nodded/nearly napping.


“When I see birches bend to left and right

Across the lines of straighter, darker trees,

I like to think some boy’s been swinging them.

But swinging doesn’t bend them down to stay.”

The poem by Robert Frost’s opening four lines constantly uses the letter “b” to draw attention to the repeated sounds of the consonant to the poem’s main idea.

Tongue twisters alliteration examples

Alliteration occurs when the writer repeats the word’s first letter in successive phrases or words. The following are some tongue twisters that create alliteration:

  • Peter piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
  • She sells seashells on the seashore.
  • How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?

Alliterative sentences

Here are some examples of what is alliteration in sentences:

  • Kate’s kid kept shouting like crazy.
  • Liza’s lizard likes to lounge on the lamp.
  • Michelle made great music on his microphone.
  • Peter’s piglet was pouncing priggishly.
  • Sister Susie’s sewing socks.

How Do You Write With Alliteration?

How Do You Write With Alliteration?<br />

Alliteration is a universal technique for enhancing the appeal of your writing or phrases. 

When used in written text, alliteration frequently occurs in poems and sayings. 

Alliteration is an innovative method people can use to express their ideas and create something intriguing and captivating. I will motivate them to write more once they realise how entertaining their writing has become.

  • Make a mountain out of a molehill.
  • Mat met Mike at the Moor.

In the examples above, the repeated sound “M” is in the first letter of the words. However, we can achieve alliteration using it in the first syllable, as given below:

  • Busy buzzing, the bee behaved beautifully

You can find the two types of alliteration in the same sentence in this example. However, all begin with “B” but have two sounds, “bu” and “be.”

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Alliteration offers writers, artists, marketers, and companies an excellent opportunity to influence users’ thoughts. It also makes all the reading material for users more captivating and intriguing. 

Motivate your readers by using alliteration examples to illustrate the significance of your content.

The alliteration of words heavily relies on rhyming, which reminds authors to use it carefully. A few well-placed repetitions can improve your English; however, using too many creates a tongue-twister. 

Now that you know alliteration and how to use it, you will use it in your upcoming writing assignment. For further insight into crafting impactful sentences, explore What is a Number sentence and its role in effective communication. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can two successive words be the same alliteration?

When a sentence repeats itself because the same sound appears each time, it is alliteration. However, repetition is the most common name for it. For example, “Peter Piper collected a peck of pickled jalapenos,” which we categorise as alliteration, and the phrase “It’s a mad, mad, mad world” is best classified as repetition.

Why is alliteration so important?

The person will indeed remember the content more if there is a use of alliteration in the text. Thus, we can use alliteration to enhance the tone or emotion of a piece of writing. We can also use it to add rhythm and emphasis to specific areas, which improves context memory.

Is what is alliteration easier to remember?

Since alliteration is repetition, it has a cognitive quality and is fun and rhythmic. Because it helps with memory, we frequently use alliteration in writing.

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