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What is the term for words that sound similar to the thing they describe?

The formation of a word from a sound associated with the thing it describes is known as onomatopoeia; the related adjective is onomatopoeic. Examples of this type of word include atishoocuckoo, croak, hiccup, miaow, ping-pong, and sizzle.

 

See other Vocabulary Questions.
See also: What is the origin of the word 'OK'?

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