Word Play Wednesday # 3   Awesome Amazing Alliteration

pexels-photo-54257 words

Today’s Wordplay will win you over to the wonder of alliteration.

Alliteration: “the occurrence of the same letter or sound at the beginning of adjacent or closely connected words.”

Using alliteration is a great way to have fun and play with words. We are all familiar with some examples of alliteration from childhood tongue twisters:


Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.

She sells seashells by the seashore.

Alliteration is not merely a device for tangling our tongues and charming children. It has an important function in the lyricism of prose, poetry and songs. It creates a rhythmic, almost musical effect, enhances flow, and brings attention to a piece of writing.

Female hand holding a pen and writing a plan in a planner

Consider the following examples:
Scrooge was secret, and self-contained and solitary as an oyster.”   From  A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.
Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dreamed before.” From “The Raven” by  Edgar Allen Poe.
 Paved paradise and put up a parking lot.”   From “Big Yellow Taxi” by Joni Mitchell


Of course children’s literature is filled with examples. Dr. Seuss’ ABC Book uses this device for each letter of the alphabet to great effect. Here is a sample:
 “David Donald Doo dreamed a dozen donuts and a duck-dog, too.”


Another important function of alliteration is in the world of commerce to help customers remember the names of products or businesses.

Krispy Kreme       Dunkin’ Donuts     Bed, Bath and Beyond


There are also many familiar phrases that use alliteration:
   tempest in a teapot    wild and wooly    It takes two to tango      leave in the lurch
 back to basics         make a mountain of a molehill
Here’s a word play activity:
Take the first letter of your name and create a list of at least 12 words beginning with that letter.
Make sure you include nouns, verbs and adjectives in your list. Include some geographical names as well.
Then try creating some sentences or phrases using as many of your words as you can.

Here is my word list.

Dana               dusty              dance              dream             Dalmatian      Detroit

dinosaur         dirty                dodge             dash                doodle                        dour

dragon            dotty               disturb           dazzle             doff                 distracted

dilettante       dingy              drink               dare                deepen           deafening

daisy               doubting        dazzle             dwell               douse              delay  


 Here are a couple of sentences I created.
Dana daringly dwells in dazzling dreams.


The drawing dilettante doodled daisies on the Dalmatian’s dots.


You may want to keep going with this idea using other letters of the alphabet or take your words and create a poem, chant or song. You might want to illustrate your sentences with drawing or painting.

Startup Stock Photo

If you are feeling absolutely alliterative, create an alphabet book and add your own illustrations.
Share your sentences in the comments. I would love to see what you come up with.

Are you an alliterative ace?