If we speak literally, cacophony factors to a state of affairs in which there is a aggregate of harsh and inharmonious sounds. In literature, however, the term refers to the use of phrases with sharp, harsh, hissing, and unmelodious sounds – in general the ones of consonants – to reap favored results.
Common Cacophony Examples
In everyday life, an example of cacophony would be the amalgamation of different sounds you listen in a busy city street or market. You pay attention sounds of vehicles, bulletins on loudspeakers, music, and chatter of human beings, or maybe a dog barking at the equal time and with none harmony. You can rightly factor to the state of affairs as being the cacophony of a busy road or market. We can note the manifestation of cacophony in language as well. For instance, in the sentence,
“I detest war due to the fact cause of struggle is continually trivial.”
The phrase “because cause” is cacophonic as because is accompanied through the word reason, which has a similar sound, but exceptional meaning. Generally, it sounds unsightly as the identical sound is repeated in two exceptional phrases.
Similarly, a discordant sound of a musical band, tuning up their musical instruments, is an instance of cacophony.
Cacophony and Euphony
Cacophony is opposite to euphony, which is the usage of words having high-quality and harmonious effects. Generally, the vowels, the semi-vowels, and the nasal consonants (e.G. L, m, n, r, y) are considered to be euphonious. Cacophony, on the alternative hand, makes use of consonants in mixtures that require explosive delivery (e.G., p, b, d, g, k, ch-, sh- etc.).
Examples of Cacophony in Literature
In literature, the unpleasantness of cacophony is utilized by writers to give dreadful or distasteful situations. Let us take a look at some Cacophony examples in literature:
Example #1: Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (By Lewis Carroll)
Abundant use of cacophonic phrases may be located in Lewis Carroll’s nonsense poem Jabberwocky, in his novel Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There.
” ‘Twas brillig, and the slithy toves
Did gyre and gimble within the wabe;
All mimsy had been the borogoves,an
And the mome raths outgrabe.
“Beware the Jabberwock, my son!
The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!
Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun
The frumious Bandersnatch!”
In the excerpt, we see a group of nonsense words, which are at the identical time unmelodious. After reading the poem, Alice, the main man or woman of the novel, offers her impression, which without a doubt reflects the reason of the poem. She says:
“Somehow it seems to fill my head with ideas—most effective I don’t exactly realize what they are! However, someone killed something: that’s clear, at any rate.”
Example #2: The Bridge (By Hart Crane)
Another instance of cacophony is discovered in Hart Crane’s poem The Bridge:
“The nasal whine of power whips a brand new universe…
Where spouting pillars spoor the night sky,
Under the looming stacks of the gigantic power house
Stars prick the eyes with sharp ammoniac proverbs,
New verities, new inklings within the velvet hummed
Of dynamos, in which hearing’s leash is strummed…
Power’s script, – wound, bobbin-bound, refined –
Is stopped to the slap of belts on booming spools, spurred
Into the bulging bouillon, harnessed jelly of the stars.”
The disorder and confusion of the industrial international has been expressed here with the aid of the author, via deliberate choice of cacophonic phrases and phrases.
Example #3: Gulliver’s Travels (By Jonathan Swift)
Look at the following excerpt from Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels:
“And being no stranger to the artwork of warfare, I have him an outline of cannons, culverins, muskets, carabines, pistols, bullets, powder, swords, bayonets, battles, sieges, retreats, attacks, undermines, countermines, bombardments, sea-fights…”
In order to describe the destructive effects of battle, the author chooses words and arranges them in an order that produces an effect this is unmelodious, harsh, and jarring, which corresponds with the concern matter.
Example #4: Rime to the Ancient Mariner (By Samuel Taylor Coleridge)
Read the subsequent traces from Coleridge’s Rime to the Ancient Mariner:
“With throats unslaked, with black lips baked,
Agape they heard me call.”
These strains illustrate cacophony by the usage of the phrases black, baked and agape, which corresponds with the severity of the situation faced by means of the Mariner and other people on board.
Function of Cacophony
Writers use cacophony as a device to describe a discordant situation the use of discordant phrases. The use of such phrases allows readers to photograph and experience the unpleasantness of the situation the writer has defined via phrases.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw