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Homophone

 

Techniques > Use of language > Figures of speech > Homophone

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Description

Homophones are words that are spelled differently yet have the same (or very similar) pronunciation.

Example

His death, which happen'd in his berth,
At forty-odd befell:
They went and told the sexton,
and The sexton toll'd the bell.

(From 'Faithless Sally Brown', by Thomas Hood)

Discussion

The general principle of homophones is at the heart of many puns, where the confusion (or maybe not) leads to a review of what was heard until the wit is realized.

The unexpectedness and confusion can be used in persuasion to distract and otherwise enable key messages to be slipped past the person's guard.

Classification: Hidden, Attention

See also

Confusion principle

 

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