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53

Firstly, orange does rhyme with a few words: there's the word 'sporange' in botany (and related words hypnosporange, macrosporange, and megasporange) whose American pronunciation rhymes with 'orange', there's a hill 'Blorenge' in Wales, and it has been claimed (perhaps humorously) that in some dialects, 'door-hinge' is pronounced to rhyme with 'orange'. But ...


26

Literacy, pens, paper, the printing press. A written culture has different restrictions than an oral culture dependant on ease of repetition from memory. According to the University of Wisconsin Digital Collections Center: Beowulf is the oldest narrative poem in the English language, embodying historical traditions that go back to actual events and ...


23

Who says we don't? Have you listened to rap or hip-hop lately? Anglo-Saxon poetry like Beowulf was heavily beat-based and while it didn't involve rhyme it used alliteration instead. The lines were recited to four stressed beats to a line with a coesura halfway between each one. I have long considered Anglo-Saxon poetry to be the rap music of its day.


21

In this passage, marry¹ is not used as an oath or as a term of surprise; it is used as an interjection meaning “certainly”. Wiktionary gives definition “(obsolete) indeed!, in truth!; a term of asseveration”, and illustrates with a quotation from Shakespeare’s Henry IV: “I have chequed him for it, and the young lion repents; marry, not in ashes and ...


15

It's a subverted rhyme. I hesitate to cite TV Tropes directly but the term has also appeared in ELU.


13

This is a kind of rhyming known as off rhyme: off rhyme n. A partial or imperfect rhyme, often using assonance or consonance only, as in dry and died or grown and moon. Also called half rhyme, near rhyme, oblique rhyme, slant rhyme. So the answer is no, those lines don't rhyme perfectly. But they sorta kinda do rhyme, if you're not too strict.


13

I expect the strained rhymes in Dante are merely from the fact that it's translated. If you're writing original poetry, you have much more freedom to change things around to make them rhyme than you do if you're translating poetry, and care about keeping it moderately faithful to the original. Anyway, Dante's terza rima scheme is pretty much iambic ...


12

It may be a take-off on an expression that had been used to sound like someone at a Chinese laundry..."no tickee, no washee!", which meant that without a ticket, you could not pick up your laundry. So "no coffee, no workee" means that without the coffee, you'll get no work. This original expression that mimics Chinese Pidgin English, spoken by early ...


11

It's simply, linguistic'ly logical That the question is quite tautological; The limerick's built On our language's lilt - Anapestic'ly meter-o-logical. In other words, it's not that it's easy to write limericks in English; it's that limericks arose from the naturally rollicking anapestic rhythm of the English language.


11

This answer is mostly a synthesis of the useful discussion found above. I don't think English is unusually well-suited to Limericks, or, more broadly, highly structured rhymes. One poster mentioned a Russian analog, and in Spanish there is the Quintilla. I would say that there are a couple of preconditions that a language must meet: A low average ...


10

There is an interesting argument that none of the classical rhyme schemes is natural to English, and that instead alliterative verse is the most natural form. JRR Tolkien is well-known for his work on this theory (in addition to some other, more obscure works). Alliterative verse is characterized by (1) the use of head-rhymes or alliterations and (2) meter ...


10

pulchritude It sounds horrible (to me, at least) - but means beauty (see also: pulchritudinous). As for complimentary words that sound rhyme with chunky: how about "funky"? EDIT: Definition of funky.


10

I think would and flood are or were rhyming pairs in some dialects of English. This is not surprising, as /ʊ/ (as in would) and /ʌ/ (as in flood) are similar vowel sounds. I think in some dialects of modern British English, the two vowels are merged. The general term for words that almost rhyme is called slant rhyme. Words that are spelled like they might ...


10

This is marry the interjection, which is originally a minced oath. According to OEtmD, the term is an obsolete corruption of the name of Mary, the mother of Jesus. Shakespeare was fond enough of marry used in this way – and also of the unminced oath by God’s Mother – that both appear in various glossaries of archaic words found in his plays. A fair reading ...


8

For often Merriam-Webster marks the pronunciation with T with an obelus (÷), meaning indicates that many regard as unacceptable the pronunciation variant immediately following: nuclear \nü-kl-r, nyü-, ÷-ky-lr\ The Random House dictionary says: Often was pronounced with a t -sound until the 17th century, when a pronunciation without the [t] came to ...


8

Using the CMU pronouncing dictionary, I gathered all the words that have the STRUT vowel (ARPABET AH1 ) or the FOOT vowel (ARPABET UH1) before an L sound. Then I eliminated all the rare words, most proper names, and the etymologically related words, leaving only roots: FOOT words bull Fulbright pull bulldoze full pulley bullet fulsome ...


7

"Often" is an example of spelling pronunciation. The history of often is sort of conflicted but most of the sites I found via Google pointed away from pronouncing the word with a /t/ sound. Strangely, "soften" also falls into this category. The word is does not strictly have a /t/ sound and is traditionally pronounced ˈsôfən. I did again see references to a ...


7

Like Mitch says, you're probably looking for a Rhyming Dictionary. You can find many Rhyming Dictionaries over the internet. Rhyme Zone is a particularly good one, since it groups results into syllables, which can be helpful for poetry writing or any similar activity. A google search of Rhyming Dictionary software could get you something useful, although ...


7

If you believe David Crystal's reconstructions of Elizabethan pronunciation, you can check out the Romeo and Juliet recording on this page. There both "love" and "remove" are pronounced with a vowel very much like that in the modern "love", but shorter. I know his work is well-respected enough that the Globe has used it in a few productions, but I believe ...


7

This usage of marry is hopelessly obsolete. It's just an interjection (derived from The Virgin Mary, so you could call it a minced oath) that was used to express surprise - in this case, the sheep obviously would be surprised to be asked if he had any wool! A more modern equivalent would be indeed. A much more modern one would be absolutely. There's also ...


6

I think the Norman Conquest might have had something to do with it. After 1066 Norman French was the prestige language in England for two or three centuries and was a huge influence on the subsequent development of English. It would have been surprising if it had not brought French literary practice with it. As far as I know, there is no tradition of ...


6

This is a very deep question and I've wondered myself, often, why perfect rhymes sound so awful. I don't have an answer (let alone the answer). All I have is some pieces. Item: There is no doubt that such an effect exists, and is predictable and general. It's similar to the priming that occurs with a ticking clock that jolts us when it stops. Item: There ...


5

I admire your will to contrive history to turn Old Mother Hubbard into a master work of literature. Unfortunately in this case, I don't think there's terribly much evidence for these words rhyming (or at least, not for a majority of speakers). If you look at dictionaries from the 19th century, the words "bone" and "none" are squarely transcribed with ...


5

Except in the technical case of equivocal words (where a single word has multiple pronunciations). If B was an equivocal word, it could rhyme with both A and C, yet A and C would not rhyme. For example: A = taxes B = axes C = taxis In this case, B is the plural of axe to rhyme with A, and the plural of axis to rhyme with C, but A and C do not rhyme. ...


5

There is no rhyme in the sentence, but its rhythm is iambic, that is, one unstressed syllable followed by a stressed one. It is typical of English speech and frequently found in English verse. The sentence is also alliterative, in that three of the five words begin with the sound /k/. Alliteration was a feature of Old English verse, and it still appeals to ...


5

Rhyming words based on spelling when they are not pronounced the same is called variously "eye rhyme", "sight rhyme", or "visual rhyme". This may occur due to historical changes in word pronunciation, where words in the rhyme were once pronounced the same, but no longer are. However, it is also a valid poetic device; the presence of eye rhyme does not ...


4

Here's a link that may help: http://www.wikirhymer.com/ It's a little weird to use. You have to select a word from the dropdown list. As it says, you have to ". . . type a word into the Find Rhymes box. Select a word from the dropdown list and you will be whisked to the appropriate set of rhyming words including all near and 'pure' (also known as hard) ...


4

I don't know of a specific source for exactly what you are asking for, But: With the Regex dictionary you can search for arbitrary regular expressions in words. You can enter the following regex to find words that contain the letters or in the middle. ..*or.*[bcdfghjklmnpqrstvwxyz].* The expression I used requires that a consonant appear following ...



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