I understand alliteration to be "repetition of a sound in successive stressed syllables". Assuming that's correct then "Tsuki hits" should be alliterate (since stress pattern is "TSU-ki HITS"). But when I say 'hits', the 'ts' seems quieter and less forceful than the 'hi' despite being in the same syllable. While it falls under the definition, "Tsuki hits" doesn't feel like it should.

I'm wondering if this means that my understanding of alliteration is incorrect (e.g. it's not based on stressed syllables, but rather on some other word divisions) or if despite how it sounds to me, "Tsuki hits" is alliterate.

  • I suppose this is complicated by the fact that Tsuki is likely to be pronounced with a silent T in English. – snailplane Sep 22 '13 at 18:24
  • ALliteration, consonance, big deal, they're all about repetition. – Mitch Sep 22 '13 at 23:54

Alliteration is the repetition of the initial consonant in two or more words. It does not describe the repetition of the initial consonant of one word at the end of another.

  • Not according to wikipedia (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alliteration). They give the example that "bold beauty" is alliterate, but "between beauties" is not. Though according to dictionary.com (dictionary.reference.com/browse/alliteration), both definitions are correct. – Andrei Khramtsov Sep 22 '13 at 16:32
  • 2
    The OED’s definition is ‘The commencement of adjacent or closely connected words with the same sound or letter’. It goes on to say that it is also ‘the commencement of certain accented syllables of a verse with the same consonant or consonantal group, or with any vowel sounds’, but prefaces this by restricting it to Old and Middle English and other Germanic poetry. Still, I have deleted my final sentence in the light of this definition. But in any case, no authority I know of says that alliteration describes anything other than initial sounds. – Barrie England Sep 22 '13 at 16:46

It is an example of consonance, which is a poetic device characterized by the repetition of the same consonant two or more times in short succession.

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