Rime vs. Rhyme – What’s the Difference?

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Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

Rhyme and rime are yet another set of pesky homophones that cause mass confusion in the English language. To the ear, they’re identical. But to the eye, spelling matters because their definitions are so far apart and can change the meaning of an entire sentence. So, let’s dig down to the nitty-gritty of rhyme and rime and see how you’re supposed to use each one.

Rime vs. Rhyme

Rime vs. Rhyme Whats the Difference

While rhyme relates to poetic structure, rime has a different use. It’s not as commonly used as it once was and is derived from Old English. It’s meant to describe the frost that forms on cold things by the quick freezing of water vapor in clouds or fog.

The Trick to Remember the Difference

So, how do you remember which is which? Here’s a handy trick I use. Both rime and ice have i as the second letter in the word. This can help you remember that rime has to do with ice and frost, while rhyme, well, just doesn’t.

Some people remember that rhyme and nursery both have the letter y in them, which comes in handy when you consider the term nursery rhyme.

How Do You Spell Rhyme?

Rhyme is the term we use to describe when two or more words sound alike and to refer to lines in poetry. It’s supposed to be spelled as r-h-y-m-e.

Rhyme Examples in a Sentence

  • Most children’s nursery rhymes are full of fun and whimsy, but some are pretty dark.
  • The young poet chose to structure her poem in couplets to create a clear rhyming scheme.
  • Eminem’s ability to create complex rhymes made him a standout in the world of rap.
  • The rhyme and rhythm of the song made it catchy and easy to remember, which is why my kids love it.
  • My favorite nursery rhyme as a kid was the tale of the golden goose.
  • The kid’s book author had a talent for finding unexpected words that rhymed perfectly.

Rime Examples in a Sentence

Rime vs. Rhyme Whats the Difference 1
  • The early morning rime glistened on the crisp leaves, and the whole garden sparkled like diamonds.
  • The rime on the window created an intricate pattern that looked like lace, and I followed it with my fingertip.
  • As winter set in across Newfoundland, a thick layer of rime coated the barren tree branches and trunks.
  • One of my favorite things about early signs of winter is the rime that sticks to the flowers and leaves in my garden, making it look magical.
  • I spent twenty minutes scraping the rime off my car windshield, and that’s why I’m late for work.
  • The combination of icy rime and fog gave the vast coastal landscape an eerie, otherworldly appearance.

Time Rhymes with Rime

Don’t let homophones make you look like a bad writer! Taking the time to read up and learn the difference between words like rhyme and rime can make a whole world of difference. It’s vital that you understand the differences between them. Hopefully, my guide helped break things down. Be sure to check out my other helpful tip on using homophones!