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The idea for this article was seeded by my nephew who wanted a quick rhyming poem for his class assignment. I was really surprised as the dreaded Writer’s Block halted me in my tracks and stopped me from coming up with good rhyming words and dashing of an off-the-cuff poem. It took me some time, but I did manage to compose a good one. It will have Milton and his buddies rolling in laughter, but I think they won’t be throwing eggs at me from up there.
I am sure you know that creating rhyming poems – though high on the cheesy scale – has its uses. From birthday cards to classroom assignments, from Valentine endearments to Facebook status updates, rhyming words to make a poem is an “in-demand” art form. I reckon that if aspiring poets can have their poetry apps and poetry get-togethers on the web, we amateurs can do with a bit of rhyming help. These rhyming tools might spew out terrible poems, but you just might like the wordplay.
Rhyme Brain opens with a simple but attractive interface. It is a multilingual rhyming generator that speaks Dutch, Spanish, Russian, German, French, and English. Type in your word in the large box and press enter. Rhyme Brain generates and displays rhyming words in the language of your choosing. Rhyme Brain uses machine learning to match keywords with their phonetic equivalents. The results also include near-rhymes and slant rhymes (imperfect rhymes). Rhyme Brain can also supply you with portmanteaus and alliterations.
The rhyming generator has 2.6 million words in its database to match your supplied word against.
B-Rhymes says that it is a rhyming dictionary that’s not stuck up about what does and doesn’t rhyme. It tries to match rhyming words that sound good together. B-Rhymes generates half-rhymes that follow phonetic principles though they may rhyme according to syllables. B-Rhymes does give you a chance to walk away without sounding too commonplace with your poems. B-Rhymes supplies each rhyming word with a pronunciation and a score that indicates its rhyming strength.
You also might like to try out the B-Rhymes iPhone and Android app.
The Scholastic site seems just the thing for kindergarten students, though it is a good teaching aid. Reggie Loves to Rhyme is interactive with fun colorful pictures and sounds. It is designed like a game. As you can see from the screenshot, children will have to pick a room and entering that, they have to pick objects to make them rhyme with another object within that room.
Scholastic is one of the oldest and largest educational companies in the world with a global reach of 150 countries.
WikiRhymer is a neat community powered website in the best traditions of contributory wikis. Rhymes can be sourced under pure rhymes, end rhymes, near rhymes, near-end rhymes, and mosaic rhymes categories. WikiRhymer has a forum going for it where you can discuss poetry, songs, and anything else that has to do with vowel chimes. The site is small because it is new, but here’s hoping it grows with some exposure.
The site has been founded by a song writer (Bud Tower).
You just have to take the word for it…because it comes from Merriam-Webster. One of the oldest and respected names in the English lexicology space has a well-designed dictionary meant for kids. Word Central has a dictionary, a thesaurus, a rhyming words dictionary, and interactive games. The rhyming dictionary presents a long list of words that possibly rhyme with your keyword. I tried out a few words which aren’t so commonplace; the results were impressive. It is to be expected that a resource like Merriam-Webster will have a large index of words to draw from.
According to the FAQ, the online version contains more than 70,000 entries, 730 color illustrations, 300 word history paragraphs, 170 synonym paragraphs, and abundant examples showing how words are used in context.
Rhymes & Chimes has an attractive façade to go with its name. The rhyming dictionary’s mission is to become the largest human-edited rhymes collection on the web. Results are broken down according to syllables (1 to 3), and you can also search for the word’s translations, its uses in phrases and quotes, along with other conversions as you can see in the screenshot. One of the unique features is that it also gives you citation styles for different types of documents.
What Rhymes With is a straightforward dictionary without any frills. You can use the search to quickly find words that rhyme with each other. The dictionary searches by pronunciation. The results are returned in an easy to read flat format. Words are also hyperlinked which you can click to drill down to more rhymed words.
Think of these seven tools as archetypal of this type of word usage. These seven are definitely some of the neatest I came across in my research. I didn’t have to dig deep because rhyme dictionaries are as common as dimes. Though, good ones as these are rare. Don’t forget to check out what my friend Ryan reviewed a few years back – a powerful, free rhyme generator called VersePerfect that you can download and use.
The seriousness with which these tools are developed and used flies in the face of my article title. Why terrible poems? You can use it to write lyrics and good poems. Do you? Please comment if you augment your creativity with any rhyme generators.
Image Credit: Poetry via Shutterstock