26 September 2007

What rhymes with orange?

So I learned today that the term for words that have no rhyme is "refractory rhyme", which I kind of like because the definition of "refractory" is: stubbornly disobedient; unmanageable. Anyway, I always heard "orange" used as the classic example of a word without a rhyme, but there are actually a lot of others. Among the words listed, I find it interesting that silver and purple are also on the list...what's up with the non-rhyming colors? That seems odd.

I also particularly like the following sentence, used to illustrate that although there is no perfect rhyme for the word "engine", there are a number of near rhymes: "To my chagrin I said to my conjoined twin: 'the tin engine caused quite a din as the wheels did spin, screeching like a violin.'"

On another, tangentially related note...when writing the above I was once again annoyed by the issues raised when using quotation marks and commas/periods. In the first sentence above, for example, should it be "refractory rhyme", or "refractory rhyme," ? The answer seems to be that in the US, it should be the later, but the UK advocates the former. Since I have always thought that the comma/period inside the quotation marks 1) makes no sense and 2) disturbs by sense of symmetry, I am going with the other side of the pond on this one. It was their language first, you know...

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