WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
al•lit•er•a•tion /əˌlɪtəˈreɪʃən/USA pronunciation   n. [uncountable]
  1. Poetryrepetition of the same initial sound or sounds of two or more word groups, as in from stem to stern.
al•lit•er•a•tive/əˈlɪtəˌreɪtɪv, -ərətɪv/USA pronunciation  adj. See -lit-.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2015
al•lit•er•a•tion  (ə lit′ə rāshən), 
  1. Poetrythe commencement of two or more stressed syllables of a word group either with the same consonant sound or sound group(consonantal alliteration),as in from stem to stern, or with a vowel sound that may differ from syllable to syllable(vocalic alliteration),as in each to all. Cf. consonance (def. 4a).
  2. Poetrythe commencement of two or more words of a word group with the same letter, as in apt alliteration's artful aid.
  • Medieval Latin alliterātiōn-, stem of alliterātiō, equivalent. to al- al- + literātiō, modeled after obliterātiō obliteration but intended to convey a derivative of littera letter
  • 1650–60

Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

alliteration /əˌlɪtəˈreɪʃən/ n
  1. the use of the same consonant (consonantal alliteration) or of a vowel, not necessarily the same vowel (vocalic alliteration), at the beginning of each word or each stressed syllable in a line of verse, as in around the rock the ragged rascal ran
Etymology: 17th Century: from Medieval Latin alliterātiō (from Latin al- (see ad-) + litera letter), on the model of obliterātiō obliteration

alˈliterative adj

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