Consonance in Poetry & Examples Sentences

What is Consonance?

Consonance is a literary tool that manifests the repetition of consonant sounds in the series of words and phrases. Such repeated consonant sounds occur all over the word in the middle or even at the end of the word, and they can be totally different. For example, the phrase “chuckling chickens”; shows that in these two words the syllable “ck” is repeating, which gives the sense of harmony and melody to the sentence.

Common Examples of Consonance

Sure, here are 10 examples of consonance in sentences:

  1. The sunken ship’s silver coins gleamed in the sea.
  2. The old man coughed and wheezed in the cold.
  3. The little bunny hopped through the muddy puddles.
  4. She whistled while she worked in the kitchen.
  5. The bees buzzed busily in the blooming garden.
  6. The gleaming beams of sunlight beamed through the window.
  7. The sly fox watched as the ducks waddled through the reeds.
  8. The baby baboon babbled and bawled in the zoo.
  9. The frosty air filled his lungs with a sharp, icy breath.
  10. The playful breeze blew the leaves off the trees.
  11. Mike likes his new bike.
  12. He struck a streak of bad luck.
  13. Toss the glass, boss.
  14. The wind whispered through the willows.
  15. The light of the moon flows over the roof.

Examples of Consonance in Poetry

Consonants, as implied, is one of many devices in which poets communicate rhythm juxtaposing sounds and it is an element that helps set the mood of the poem. 

However, this technique could also function in this way of highlighting some words while storing them in your memory or in the way that a certain idea would be emphasized and turned into something worth remembering. 

Along with this, consonance can be employed to create a sense of connection and unanimity within a piece of writing which, in turn, can allow different elements to be tied together to give the writing a solid and consistent feel.

Here are some examples of consonance in poetry.

1. “The Tyger” by William Blake

Tyger Tyger burning’ bright
In what distant deep’s or skie’s
And when thy heart began to beat
What dread hand? and what dread feet?

The stanza of the poem contains a horrifying creature’s development of the tiger. There is also a feeling of suspense about the creature’s creator. 

These lines create a form of the picture of the tiger in the reader’s mind. The repetition of the “t” syllable in the words, “Tyger Tyger burning bright” and “d” syllable in the words “dread hand, dread feet” clearly shows the application of the consonance. 

The implication of the consonance gives musical connotations while also imparting the poem with a smooth flow. It also edifies the mood of the poem of unfathomable dark and secretive sides of the dire tiger.

See also: Literary Devices List

2. “Behind Me Dips Eternity” by Emily Dickinson

Behind me, dips eternity
Behind me, immortality
Myself, the term between
Death but the drift of Eastern Gray
Dissolving into Dawn away
Before the West begin

The concept of eternity and life after death has been vividly discussed in the poem. Dickinson throughout the stanza emphasizes the concept that the life is moving towards death and soon the dawn of life will convert into the darkness of death.

The poet provokes her idea of immortality by using imagery and symbolism throughout this poem and how religion takes part in it. She considers death as pleasure for the human because he can get rid of the life miseries after death.

The repeated “m” and “n” syllables in the words like “me” “eternity” “myself” “term” “Eastern” and “begin” create a compatible flow in the stanza.

Moreover, the use of consonance enhances the philosophical and reflective nature of the poem. It emphasizes the recurrent themes of life and death and evokes a introspective mood in the readers.

3. “Out, Out” by Robert Frost

The buzz-saw snarled and rattle in the yard
And made dust and dropped stove-length sticks of wood,
Sweet-scented stuff when the breeze drew across it.
And from there those that lifted eyes could count

Here the use of ]same letters in the stanza shows the use of symmetry. ‘Frost’ by giving the theme of tragedy, makes his readers realize that death is a humdrum fact of life.

He shows the tragic moment of a boy injured in an accident and how his life ended. While repeatedly using the words “buzz-saw,” ‘stove-length,’ and ‘sticks of wood’ enchantingly described the end of life of a young boy whose hand got injured with a saw while cutting woods.

4. “Politics” by William Butler Yeats

On Roman or on Russian”

Yeat’s uses consonance in this line and shows the politics of two different countries. He has also given concept of love that ‘love’ is superior to politics.

5. “Go And Catch a Falling Star” by (John Donne)

“Though at next door we might meet’’

The poem is the poet’s experience of the world. He considers all the beautiful women immorally corrupt.

The above line also refers to the concept that the beautiful woman who meets you at one place may meet you anywhere else. Here the ‘t’ sound is being repeated in the line.

6. “The Good Morrow” by John Donne

Did, till we loved? Were we not weaned till then?

It is a love poem by ‘Donne.’ The poet is so much absorbed in the love of his lover that he asks her that were we love simply like childish? or are we in need of something more?

The poem is about the love of two lovers and their praise for each other. The sound of the letter “d’’ has been repeatedly used as consonance in the poem.

7. “Daffodils” by Wordsworth

I wandered lonely as a cloud

‘Wordsworth’ is considered the poet of nature. His praise of nature is worth mentioning. Through this poem, he compares himself to the daffodils floating near the river bank. The beauty of flowers tempts him.

The free movement of the flowers encourages him, and he also feels like a cloud in the sky that is wandering here and there like the daffodils are moving. Here the letters ‘l’ and ‘d’ are repeating, an example of consonance.

8. Casting and Gathering by Seamus Heaney

Years and years ago, these sounds took sides.

Seamus Heaney wrote this poem in blank verse and used simple language.

The poem is about the conflict between two major parties, ‘capitalists’ and ‘socialists’; however, some critics consider that “Heaney” wrote this poem for his friend Ted’Hughes.’ Despite this, the composition of this poem using stylistic devices is praiseworthy, especially the use of consonance sound in the shape of the ‘s’ sound.

9. Sonnet 64 by William Shakespeare

Increasing store with loss and loss with store

In the above line, the repetition of the ‘s’ sound at the beginning of words, ‘store’ and ‘loss’ is example of consonance.

10. “O Where Are You Going” by W.H. Auden

O’ where are you going? said reader to rider

‘Auden’ wrote this poem in ballad form. The poem is about the fate of humans. Firstly the discussion of the two characters is deciphered in the poem.

The first fears the others about the hardships he may face in his path. In other words, what humans face in their life has been discussed in this poem. The use of symmetry in the shape of letters ‘o’ and ‘e’ is apparent in this line.

Read further: Literary Devices That Start With C

Difference between Alliteration & Consonance:

Alliteration is the repetition of the first consonant sound in multiple words. For example, ‘Sana sees the sea sight’ and ‘Feena finds the food for farmers.’

‘Consonance’ involves the repetition of vowel sound not usually at the beginning but also in the middle or at the end of a word, line, phrase, or test. For example, “My son is under the sun.”

Consonance in Poetry
Consonance in Poetry Examples

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