Rhyme vs rime

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Rhyme and rime are two words that are pronounced the same way but are spelled differently and have different meanings. They are homophones. We will examine the definitions of the words rhyme and rime, where the terms come from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Rhyme describes words that have the same ending sound. For example, sing, wing and ting. Rhyme is also used to describe a short poem where the last words in each line have the same ending sound. Rhyme is also used as a verb to mean composing a work that includes words that have the same ending sound. Related words are rhymes, rhymed, rhyming. The word rhyme is derived from the Middle English word, ryme.

Rime is frost, created by the supercooling of water droplets from fog on objects. Rime is also sometimes used as a verb, related words are rimes, rimed, riming. The word rime is derived from the Old English word hrim, it is most often used in literary works and not often used in everyday language.


The book, which starts with lullabies and runs up to rhymes for six year olds, is illustrated throughout by the Scottish artist Bob Dewar and has been published by Luath Press. (The Border Telegraph)

And it does so powerfully through a montage of clips featuring India’s women athletes training to the soundtrack of kindergarten children singing the familiar rhyme. (The Hindustan Times)

We witnessed rime when mushing through one dark winter in Minnesota (“It’s not the cold, it’s the rigid frigidity.”) (The Staunton News Leader)

Barren except for the spruces dotting the fell’s gentle slopes that, during the winter months, develop a hard, frosty covering known in Finnish as tykky or tykkylumi, or hard rime in English. (The New York Times)

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