Onomatopoeia is a sound translated into words. These sounds are exactly the same all over the globe, but our interpretation of them is different.
For example in England a frog says ‘ribbit’, in Germany it says ‘quaken’, in Spain the says ‘croá croá’ and in Japan it says ‘kero kero’. But it’s not the animals that are speaking different languages, we humans are!
Here are some onomatopoeic definitions and examples in sentences so you can see how they are used. They can all be used as nouns or verbs.
The sound a bee or a buzzer makes.
e.g. I rang the bell and Jane buzzed me into the building.
The sound of an explosion or a door slamming.
e.g. She banged her head getting into the car.
The loud sound a dog makes.
e.g. ‘I can’t get any sleep, that dog has been barking all night.’
A sound that you might make with your mouth after drinking a fizzy drink.
e.g. ‘That’s disgusting Joseph, you can’t burp at the dinner table.’
A short sharp sound that can be made with the tongue, fingers or two hard objects.
e.g. It was magic. She clicked her fingers and the light came on.
The sound of somebody striking their knuckles on a door.
e.g. There was nobody in. I knocked 3 times but nobody answered.
When somebody is speaking quietly and unclearly.
e.g. ‘Stop mumbling Patrick. Nobody can understand you.’
A light explosion, like a balloon or a bottle of champagne.
e.g. ‘Shall we pop open this bottle of champagne to celebrate?’
The sound of dry leaves, paper or a crisp packet.
e.g. ‘Shhhh! Stop rustling. I’m trying to watch the movie.’
Speaking very quietly and without voice.
e.g. ‘Tell me the secret. Just whisper and no-one will hear.’
Are these the same in your language? What are some onomatopoeic sounds that you know?
Please leave your comments below!