Update
Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD REFERENCE (www.oxfordreference.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single entry from a reference work in OR for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 20 April 2024

Euphony. 

Source:
The Oxford Companion to the English Language
Author(s):
Tom McArthurTom McArthur, Jacqueline Lam-McArthurJacqueline Lam-McArthur, Lise FontaineLise Fontaine

A pleasant, harmonious quality in speech. The perception of such a quality is partly physiological (soft, flowing, blending sounds are generally considered pleasanter than harsh, jangling, discordant sounds) and partly cultural (people tend to like sounds that they have been led to like). In English, euphony is often associated with long vowels, the semi-vowels or glides /j, w/, and the consonants /l, m, n, r/. All of these occur in the opening verse of Gray’s ‘Elegy Written in a Country Church-Yard’ (... ...

Access to the complete content on Oxford Reference requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.