An onomatopoeia (i/ˌɒnoʊˌmætəˈpiːə-ˌmɑː-/,[1][2] or chiefly NZ /-ˈpeɪə/; from the Greek ὀνοματοποιία;[3] ὄνομα for "name"[4] and ποιέω for "I make",[5] adjectival form: "onomatopoeic" or "onomatopoetic") is a word that phonetically imitates, resembles or suggests the source of the sound that it describes. Onomatopoeia (as an uncountable noun) refers to the property of such words. Common occurrences of onomatopoeias include animal noises such as "oink", "miaow" (or "meow"), "roar" or "chirp". Onomatopoeias are not the same across all languages; they conform to some extent to the broader linguistic system they are part of;[6][7] hence the sound of a clock may be tick tock in English, dī dā in Mandarin, or katchin katchin in Japanese, or "tik-tik" (टिक-टिक) in Hindi.

Although in the English language, the term onomatopoeia means "the imitation of a sound," the compound word onomatopoeia(ονοματοποιία) in the Greek language means "making or creating names." For words that imitate sounds, the term Ηχομιμητικό (echomimetico or echomimetic) is used. Ηχομιμητικό (echomimetico) derives from Ηχώ, meaning "echo or sound", and μιμητικό, meaning "mimetic or imitation".

Onomatopeia - a figurative language which means an unrealistic exagerration.