July 31, 2013
- pun (noun)
- 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.