English Wikipedia has an article on:


James F. Fordyce (The Ideophone as a Phonosemantic Class: The Case of Yoruba, in Current approaches to African linguistics, Ivan R. Dihoff (ed.), page 263) credits C. M. Doke with introducing the term in 1935.


ideophone (plural ideophones)

  1. A word that utilizes sound symbolism to express aspects of events that can be experienced by the senses, like smell, color, shape, sound, action, or movement.
    • 1969 October, William J. Samarin, The Art of Gbeya Insults, in International Journal of American Linguistics 35(4), page 325, JSTOR
      In insults the ideophone occurs either in its characteristic position, the verb phrase, or uncharacteristically as a modifier in a noun phrase.

Derived termsEdit


See alsoEdit