Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics

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(2,137 words)

Commonly known as ‘pun’ (Redfern 1984), paronomasia is a figure of speech which is based on a play on meanings, either by using, in the same context, one homonymous or polysemic word, or by using two or more words with synonymous or closely related meanings, which are often alliterative or rhyming. Examples of this include situations where an important personality who has passed away is cynically described as a grave man (homonym), or where the expression kith and kin (alliterative idiom) is used.

Paronomasia is widely used in all genres of literature, as well as in daily comm…

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Avihai Shivtiel, “Paronomasia”, in: Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics, Managing Editors Online Edition: Lutz Edzard, Rudolf de Jong. Consulted online on 27 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1570-6699_eall_EALL_SIM_vol3_0101>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004177024, 20090831

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