Online Encyclopedia


Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V20, Page 112 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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ONOMATOPOEIA, literally the making or formation of words (Gr. ovoĀµarozroua, from 6Po/2a, name, word,7roeeiv, to make), hence a term used in philology for the formation of words by imitation of natural sounds, e.g. hiss," " hush," " click." Modern philologists prefer the term " echoism," " echoic " for this process, as suggesting the imitative repetition of the sounds heard. At one time there was an exaggerated tendency to find in echoism a principal source in the origin and growth of language, ridiculed as the " bow-wow " theory of language; it is now recognized that it has played only a limited part.
End of Article: ONOMATOPOEIA
ONOMACRITUS (c. 530-480 B.C.)

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