Difference Between Alliteration and Consonance

Main Difference – Alliteration vs Consonance

Both alliteration and consonance are literary devices that make use of the repetition of consonant sound in words that are in close proximity. Consonance can be defined as the repetition of consonant words in adjacent or closely connected words. Alliteration is a special case of consonance where the repetition occurs at the stressed part of the words. This is the main difference between alliteration and consonance.

What is Alliteration

Alliteration is the occurrence of the same consonant sound at the beginning of adjacent or closely connected words. The repetition of the consonance sound must occur in a stressed part of a word, for it to be termed as alliteration.

The repetition of the same sound helps draw attention and creates more aural rhythm. Alliteration is mostly used in poetry, but it is not uncommon in prose and drama as well. Many tongue twisters also make use of alliteration.

A big black bug bit a big black dog and the big black dog bled blood.

But a better butter makes a batter better.

She sells seashells by the seashore.

Alliteration is a commonly used device in literature as it creates a musical effect in a text, and renders flow and beauty to a piece of writing. Here are some examples of alliteration in literature:

Example 1

Ages ago, Alex, Allen and Alva arrived at Antibes, and Alva allowing all, allowing anyone, against Alex’s admonition, against Allen’s angry assertion: another African amusement…

– Alphabetical Africa by Walter Abish 

Example 2

“Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing,

Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before;

-The Raven by Edgar Allen Poe 

Example 3

“The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew,

The furrow followed free;

We were the first that ever burst

Into that silent sea.

– Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner”

What is Consonance

Consonance is the repetition of consonant sounds in words that are in close proximity. Unlike in Alliteration, the repeated sound can appear anywhere in the word. Many common idioms, phrases, as well as tongue twisters, contain examples of consonance.

All’s well that ends well

A blessing in disguise

All mammals named Sam are clammy

Consonance is a commonly used figure of speech in both poetry and prose; however, it is significantly used in poetry since it adds a rhyming effect. Given below are some examples of consonance from literature.

Example 1

“It was many and many a year ago,

In a kingdom by the sea,

That a maiden there lived whom you may know

By the name of Annabel Lee; 

Example 2

And this maiden she lived with no other thought

Than to love and be loved by me.”

-“Annabel Lee” by Edgar Allen Poe 

Example 3

“A Quietness distilled

As Twilight long begun,

Or Nature spending with herself

Sequestered Afternoon”

-“As imperceptibly as Grief” by Emily Dickinson

Difference Between Alliteration and Consonance


Alliteration is a special case of consonance where the repetition occurs at the stressed part of the words.

Consonance is the repetition of consonant words in adjacent or closely connected words.

Consonant Sound

In Alliterationconsonant sound appear at the stressed part of the word.

In Consonanceconsonant sound can appear anywhere in the word.


Alliteration is a special case of consonance.

Consonance is the main category under which alliteration falls.Difference Between Alliteration and Consonance- infographic

About the Author: admin

Related pages

bromine state of matterovertone physics definitioncpi calculation formulawhat is the difference between resistance and impedancedefinition of prologue and epiloguedifference between operant conditioning and classical conditioningwhat is enantiomers and diastereomerswhat is the difference between mexican and hispanicis it fiance or fianceewhat is the difference between appendix and annexribose dnawhat is the difference between a diploma and a gedwhat is the difference between fractional and simple distillationwhat is the difference between schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorderbacillary dysentery symptomswhat is the difference between whisky and brandydifference between pitbull and american pitbullhow to analyse poetrybiodegradability of polymerstart crust vs pie crustabstract noun and concrete noun examplesdefinition of aliphatic and aromatic compoundshypothyroidism or hyperthyroidismwhat is fennel seeds in tamilakron university nicknamealumnus usageaustralian flag meaning of starshow to analyze a poemnonvascular and vascular plants differencesdifference between keratin treatment and rebondingwhat is sushi vs sashimippf assumptionsgum paste vs fondantnaturalism realismstory using indefinite pronounsintonation and stressasexual binary fissionjuvenalian and horatian satirestructural difference between starch and glycogenwhat is an epigramdefine anthropomorphizedneuropathy causes other than diabetesdepreciation expense calculationexamples of malleable materialswhat is caste in sociologywhat is the term for the building blocks of polymerswhat is the difference between inorganic and organic compoundsheterogeneous mixture definition chemistrythe forsaken merman analysisconservation of linear momentum physicsdifference frozen yogurt and ice creamthe difference between cyclone and hurricanewhat is free market capitalism definitiondefinition of colloidal solutionwhat is the difference between pasta and noodlesdifferences between black and white rhinodifference between meiotic and mitotic cell divisionlondon dispersion forces definitionspice and condimentsdifference between channel and carrier proteinsclassical definition of tragedyelectromagnetic solenoidhoratian satire examplespaintings in ajanta cavesdesert versus dessertprose versus poetrywhat is the difference between a diploma and certificateobscenity in the milkformula of adenineconcrete abstract nounsclassical vs operantwhat is the difference between brandy and bourbonhyposmotic solutionselements of shakespearean tragedydifference between dicot and monocotairport gst claimstock characters melodramaexamples of ekphrastic poems