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What is Consonance?Consonance is a stylistic literary technique in which neighbouring words repeat the same consonant sound. This is not to be confused with alliteration as alliteration refers specifically to the beginning sound of the word and consonance refers to any other part.
Consonance is used for emphasis or to make a sentence more pleasing to the ear. It is used in every day language, poetry, and literature. To form consonance, we need two or more words that have the same consonant sound in the word anywhere except the beginning. It's important to focus on the sound rather than the letter because it is the sound that catches the audience's attention.
- He is part of a government think tank. (In this example, we see the "NK" sound repeated in "Think" and "Tank" creating the consonance.)
- The uncertain rustle of noise caused my poise. (This example shows the importance of listening to the sounds rather than looking at the letters as the c in uncertain makes an "S" noise. This "S" sound is repeated throughout the sentence and creates the consonance.)
- We are bound by a bond that can transcend the beyond.
More Consonance ExamplesBelow are more examples of consonance :
- She swung her fist in angst against the beast.
- I'll pack the clock.
- I stretch to touch the peach.
- The big dog dug a hole.
A Quick Test
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CONSONANCE CAN BE IMPACTFULConsonance is usually more subtle than alliteration. Quite often, it won't be spotted by your readers. So, if you're going to invest time in creating consonance, make sure it's strong enough to be noticeable. Used sparingly in business writing (e.g., once in a document), consonance can:
- Be used for emphasis.
- Be memorable.
- Make an impact.
- Make you look confident.
- The new look says boorish and English but also stylish.
OVERUSE OF CONSONANCEWhile consonance can be a great way to make your sentences catchy and memorable, overuse will portray your writing as flippant. Use consonance very sparingly to ensure it remains impactful.
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