If you’re a San Diegan, you know that July means more than just summer and beaches: it’s the month of ComicCon!

What is ComicCon? This convention, held at the Downtown San Diego Convention Center, is the largest and most exciting convention of the year. Celebrities and fans come from all over the world to celebrate all things comic: from the books to the movies we all love!


To celebrate, we are looking at something classically comic: onomatopoeia. This long (originally Greek) word is for words that sounds like the sound they describe. Examples include animal noises (“oink” for a pig, “meow” for a cat, and “chirp” for a bird), for the sounds of machines (“honk” or “beep-beep” for car horns or “vroom” for an engine).

Onomatopoeia is also commonly used in comic books to describe the actions in the comics. The sounds made when characters are talking or laughing, or the sounds of comic characters fighting one another, are best described using onomatopoeia.


Onomatopoeia in comics


A moment of realization

Example: Aha! Here are my keys! I’ve been looking for them.



A large slam of doors; an explosion.

Example: We were just talking and then BAM! the door slammed shut.



The sound of crying

Example: Boohoo, it’s raining today and I can’t go surfing.



Loud chewing

Example: I can hear your chomps from across the room!



The sound of cars crashing; the sound of crunchy foods being eaten

Example: The car came from nowhere, and then we heard a crunch.



Air being taken in when someone is surprised

Example: Gasp! I forgot my brother’s birthday!




Example: I can hear the “gulp, gulp, gulp” of a very thirsty person!



A painful cry

Example: Ouch! I just slammed my finger in the door!



A sigh of relief

Example: You got the job? Phew!



Someone or something being hit

Example: Pow! He hit him right in the jaw.



The sound of a forcible impact; striking something forcibly

Example: We heard this “wham!” sound and then realized that a bird had flown into the window!


Have you seen these words in action? Check out some comics and see if you can spot these words! And be sure to share your findings with us on CISL’s Facebook page.