July 31, 2013
pun (noun)
\PUN\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: the humorous use of a word in such a way as to suggest different meanings or of words having the same sound but different meanings
How do you use it?
The clever pun that Glen had included in his campaign speech produced a chuckle from the audience.
Are you a word wiz?

The English language can be used in lots of tricky ways. Which one of these statements do you think contains a pun?

It's answer A that should tickle your humorous (oops, humerus), that is, your funny bone. If you find sentence B trips up your tongue, that's because it's what we call a "tongue twister." A series of similar consonant sounds make it hard to say. Sentence C has fallen victim to the "malapropism," the use of a word that sounds somewhat like the right one, but is totally wrong as used in the statement. Here, "crank" of dawn should clearly be "crack." Sentence D is an example of "hyperbole," an exaggeration meant to emphasize a point, in this case the large size of the dog. That leaves sentence A. When "wreckless" is used instead of "reckless," the meaning becomes twisted in a humorous way.
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