Onomatopoeia is a type of figurative language that is used to describe a sound. An onomatopoeic word imitates, mimics, or suggests the sound of an action or the thing described. For example words like ”buzz”, ”sizzle” and ”meow” are all onomatopoeic words because they sound like the things they are describing.
A writer uses onomatopoeic words (also known as the sound words) in poetry or story writing to create more vivid and engaging reading experience.
For example, a writer might write ”she heard some bee buzzing around her little garden”. So, describing what is happening through such types of words that sound like the thing mentioned makes the fiction more exciting, expressive, readable, and interesting for readers. It also adds atmosphere and feel to the story.
Related: Onomatopoeia Examples in Poetry and Literature
Read the below examples of onomatopoeia with meanings, example sentences and picture included with every onomatopoeic word to understand easily.
80 Examples of Onomatopoeia: Sound Words List (with Example Sentences)
: used to represent the sound of a sneeze
Example sentence- Achoo! Murphy kept sneezing all day until his grandmother made her special herbal soup for him.
: used to represent the sound made when clearing the throat, often to attract someone’s attention, expressing disapproval or doubt or embarrassment.
Example sentence- Ahem! Excuse me, said John and left the meeting without saying anything.
: used to represent the sound of a sudden impact or hit
Example sentence– With a loud bam, the door burst open, startling everyone in the room.
: used to represent the sound of a sudden loud noise of a gunfire, explosion or knocking on the door.
Example sentence– She first heard a loud bang, then saw a dead bird lying on the ground and her idiotic brother holding a gun proudly.
: to strike hard and violently
Example sentence– He bashed the door down to save his pet from the fire.
: a noise made to frighten someone, express disapproval or contempt
Example sentence– The man yelled, boo! And every kid standing outside his door for trick or treat ran away.
: used to represent a deep, loud noise often the sound of an explosion
Example sentence– Every passenger heard the boom, before the plane started falling down.
: used to represent the bouncing, springing or twanging sound or action
Example sentence– The football went boing onto a spectator’s head.
: used to represent a short, high-pitched sound emitted by an electronic device or vehicle horn.
Example sentence– She first heard a beeping noise coming out of the kitchen and soon the house was filled with smoke.
: used to represent a noise made by air released from your stomach through the mouth
Example sentence– He felt really embarrassed when he burped in front of Emma.
: used to represent a low continuous humming sound made by a bee or insects flying
Example sentence– Flies were buzzing all around the dirty man’s body.
: used to represent a loud and harsh laughing sound
Example sentence– The witch cackled when the wizard got trapped in her trap.
: used to represent a high-pitched quick & repeated noise made by animals, birds and machines, or a sound made by the teeth when feeling very cold or frightened or to talk fast and often on trivial matters
Example sentence– The chatter of the librarian’s typewriter was disturbing everyone.
: used to represent a loud shout of applause or encouragement
Example sentence– In the final race, no one was there to cheer for her, and she still won the race.
: used to represent a sharp high-pitched sound made by small birds and some insects.
Example sentence– The cricket chirping sounds louder in the dark silent night.
: used to represent a sound made by striking palms of hand together
Example sentence– They began to clap when she entered the room.
: used to represent the noise made by pots and pans or the sound of a metal object being hit
Example sentence– The sound of the bell clanging at the clock tower could be heard from far away.
: used to represent the loud sound of metal objects hitting each other.
Example sentence– When Beth heard the clanking noise of a ferry coming closer to the island, she knew that she was saved now.
: used to represent the sound of switches, electronic buttons, or any two hard objects coming quickly into contact
Example sentence– As soon as the key clicked in the lock of the mysterious box, the light started emitting from it.
: used to represent the sound made by a horse’s hooves hitting on hard ground while walking.
Example sentence– When the queen heard the sound of clip-clops of horse hooves, she knew that the king had returned.
: used to represent a loud, rattling sound made by hitting hard objects against each other
Example sentence– In anger, she started clattering the dishes and broke many.
: used to represent short, harsh, and sharp noises
Example sentence– He turned on the radio but it started to crackle.
: used to represent the loud noise of two vehicles or heavy objects hitting each other and causing damage
Example sentence– The huge waves crashed against the small boat.
: used to represent a harsh, high-pitched or squeaking noise often coming from rusty hinges or wood-made stuff under pressure or being moved.
Example sentence– Emilia got really scared when she heard her grandmother’s rocking chair creaking at midnight, but then she saw her cat sleeping on it.
: used to represent the sound of chewing hard food or if something is being pressed or crushed
Example sentence– As she walked, she heard her footsteps crunching dried leaves.
: used to represent a short ringing sound or a bell sound.
Example sentence– She dinged the bell on the desk twice but no one showed up.
: used to represent the sound of a bell
Example sentence– Ding-dong, she rang the doorbell, but no one answered.
: use to represent the sound of liquid falling in drops
Example sentence– The drip of rain on the roof was so calming.
: used to represent a scream
Example sentence– Eek!, a screaming noise came from inside the house.
: used to represent a hissing sound coming from tiny gas bubbles popping.
Example sentence– She welcomed us with fizzy lemonade.
: used to represent a quick up and down or irregular movement
Example sentence– The leaves of the banana tree were fluttering in the wind.
: used to represent a deep, long sound or moan expressing pain, or grief
Example sentence– The wounded soldier was groaning in pain.
: used to represent a low rough sound, often someone makes when annoyed or angry
Example sentence– She just grunted and rejected his proposal for dinner.
: used to represent a low noise made by animals in their throat, usually when they are angry
Example sentence– The dog was barking and growling at the stranger.
: used to represent a quiet silly laugh
Example sentence– She started giggling in front of her professor.
: used to represent a long, loud crying sound made by a dog or wolf; to cry out loudly in anger, pain, amusement etc.
Example sentence– Her pet dog suddenly started howling at midnight.
: used to tell someone to be quiet; a sudden calm silence
Example sentence– Hush! You will wake grandpa.
: used to represent a tinkling sound made by metal pieces shaken or striking together.
Example sentence– When little Clara heard the jingle of coins in her brother’s pocket, she understood that he was the one who stole the money from her piggy bank.
: used to represent a harsh metallic sound made by metal pieces hitting each other.
Example sentence– The keys jangled in his pocket as walked down the stairs.
: used to represent the sound a cat makes.
Example sentence– She heard a meowing, and soon saw a cat coming out of her kitchen.
: used to represent a long, low sound made by a person in physical pain, or mental suffering
Example sentence– He moaned with pain when he suddenly fell from the stairs.
: used to represent a sound a cow makes.
Example sentence– As close as you reach her farm, you will start hearing the mooing of many cows.
: used to represent someone saying or speaking something very quietly
Example sentence– ‘’Thanks for the help’’, she murmured.
: to speak quietly in an unclear way, making it hard for others to understand.
Example sentence– Grandpa mumbled something and then left the house.
: to represent a sound made by a horse.
Example sentence– The horse gave a loud neigh, and then started running around the farm.
: used to represent a noise made by a pig
Example sentence– The farm pig just came close to me and oinked.
: used to represent an expression of intense or sudden pain.
Example sentence– Ow! You threw the ball so hard at me.
: used to represent a series of light tapping, or beating sounds; as of raindrops or footsteps sound
Example sentence– His feet pitter-pattered down the hall.
: used to represent or show a sudden disappearance.
Example sentence– Poof! The magician made the girl disappear.
: used to represent a short sharp or explosive sound; or to burst open with such a sound
Example sentence– All the balloons popped just after inflating.
: used to represent a loud noise as of a gun being fired or of an explosion
Example sentence– Pow! The soldier shot down the unknown drone flying around him.
: used to represent a short, sharp, high-pitched resonant sound
Example sentence– He pinged the bell, and soon a butler came for her.
: used to represent the sound of something falling or dropped into water
Example sentence– The fish dived into the river with a plop.
: used to represent a low vibrating sound made by a contented cat.
Example sentence– Her cat started purring in my lap.
: used to represent a long, loud noise.
Example sentence– The river roared down the valley.
: used to represent a continuous low sound.
Example sentence– Thunder rumbled the whole night before the heavy rainfall started.
: used to represent a dry cracking sound often of movement of dry leaves
Example sentence– The palm tree leaves rustled in the summer wind.
: used to represent the sound of silencing someone
Example sentence– Shh! You will wake him up.
: used to represent a loud, harsh, piercing sound.
Example sentence– She screeched when a mouse bounced on her.
: used to tell someone to be quiet
Example sentence– Shush! You are in the library.
: used to represent a hissing sound as of frying, cooking or burning
Example sentence– The sun was sizzling the desert land.
: to make a sucking noise while eating or drinking.
Example sentence– He was slurping a coffee drink.
: used to represent the sound of a violent impact, something breaking or shattering.
Example sentence– The ball smashed his car window.
: to breathe noisily during sleep
Example sentence– Grandpa’s loud snoring kept me awake the whole night.
: used to represent the sound of someone smelling something by breathing air through the nose.
Example sentence– Her dog started sniffing my shoes.
: used to represent the sound of crushing something soft.
Example sentence– She could hear the squish of her wet shoes while walking.
: used to represent the sound of something striking or falling into liquid causing it to spatter.
Example sentence– I heard a splash and then saw my pet dog had jumped into the swimming pool.
: used to represent the sound of something wet hitting a surface.
Example sentence– The eggs fall on the ground with a splat.
: used to represent a sound produced by a sudden rush of air or liquid
Example sentence– He kicked the ball and it swooshed past my head.
: used to represent a sound made by rats or mice, also by objects like shoes, doors or wheels
Example sentence– Her new boots squeaked as she walked.
: used to represent a sound made by one’s hitting someone or something with a fist
Example sentence– He heard a loud thump on the door at night.
: used to represent a sound made by something heavy falls or hit something
Example sentence– The book fell on the desk with a thud.
: used to represent the ticking sound of a clock.
Example sentence– He heard the tick-tock/ticking of the cloak and suddenly remembered that he was getting late for the movie.
: used to represent a vibrating sound made by plucking a string
Example sentence– He was just twanging the guitar and not playing anything musical.
: used to represent the sound someone makes when they think something is disgusting, unpleasant or annoying
Example sentence– Ugh! Her room smells so bad.
: used to represent a soft and quiet sound of someone saying something using their breath but not their voice.
Example sentence– ‘’Thank you for your support’’, she whispered.
: used to represent the sound of a soft or weak cry expressing fear or pain
Example sentence– The child started whimpering at night.
: used to represent a loud noise someone makes when expressing joy, excitement or enjoyment
Example sentence– The class was whooping and clapping for her.
: used to represent the barking sound made by a dog.
Example sentence– When she heard the woofing of her pet dog, she knew that she had found it.
: used to express fear, surprise, and shock.
Example sentence– Yikes! The deadline for the project has been changed to just two days.
: used to represent an expression of distaste or disgust
Example sentence– Yuck, It’s spinach and cabbage soup again.
: used to represent the sound of someone or something moving rapidly and making a high-pitched buzzing sound.
Example sentence- The car zinged past him.