Alankar (Figure of Speech)

Posted on 27. Mar, 2011 by in Hindi Language

Today, I would like to talk about an interesting topic in Hindi grammar.

अलंकार  (Alankaar) is a figure of speech which means ornaments or adornments. Just like the women use ornaments to enhance her beauty, Alankar in Hindi language are used essentially to enhance the beauty of a poem.

Alankar are broadly classified into two groups, these are:

1. शब्दालंकार (Shabdalankar, it came from two word Shabdh (Word) + Alankar (Ornaments)) – Certain specific words that create an ornamental effect in a verse/poem.

2. अर्थालंकार (Arthalankar it came from two word Artha (Meaning) + Alankar (Ornaments)) – The meaning of words that creates the required enhancement.

Most common शब्दालंकार (Shabdalankar) that you might find in the Hindi poetry are:

1. अनुप्रास (Anupras) (Alliteration) - When a consonant word repeats serially more than once.
Example: घेर घेर घोर गगन।. Here, “घ ” is repeated three times.

2. यमक (Yamak) (Homonym) – when same word repeats more than once but each time its meaning is different.
Example: सजना है मुझे सजना के लिए। Here, “सजना” means to make up/lover.

3. श्लेष (Shlesh) (Pun) – when a word is used once but it gives more than one meaning.
Example: मधुबन की छाती को देखो, सूखी इसकी कितनी कलियाँ। Here, “कलियाँ” means the flower that is not fully blossomed/Young children. Poet wants to describe a scene where a “मधुबन” (garden) is lacking, both in blossoming flowers and young children.

Most common अर्थालंकार (Arthalankar) that you might find in the Hindi poetry are:

1. उपमा (Upma) (Simile) – when a person or thing is compared in words with a similar but famous/well known person or thing.
Example: ताज महल सा घर। House like the Taj Mahal. Here, “घर” (house) is compared with a building which is famous for its beauty.

2. रूपक (Rupak) (Metaphor) – when a word is used for something to which it is not literally applicable in order to suggest a resemblance.
Example: पायो जी मैंने राम-रतन धन पायो। Here, “राम” (Ram, Hindu god) is suggested metaphorically as “रतन” (precious stones) and “धन” (money) .

3. अतिश्योक्ति (Atishyokti) (Hyperbole) – when a word is used of exaggerate something or someone, to evoke a strong feelings or to create a strong impression.
Example: दिल बादल बने, आँखें बहेने लगी। Here, “दिल″ (heart) is exaggerated to “बादल″ (cloud). The dramatic effect of this exaggeration would be, आँखें (eyes) that can tear as rain because the heart has turned into clouds (in pain).

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About Nitin Kumar

Nitin Kumar is a native Hindi speaker from New Delhi, India. His education qualification include Masters in Robotics and Bachelors in Mechanical Engineering.Currently, He is works in the Research and Development in Robotics in Germany. He is avid language learner with varied level of proficiency in English, German, Spanish and Chinese, Japanese and Russian. He wish to learn French one day. His passion for languages motivated him to share his mother tongue, Hindi, and culture and traditions associated with it. He has been working with Transparent Language in 2010 and since then has written over 350 blogs on various topics on India, its culture, Hindi language and traditions. He is also the Administrator for Hindi Facebook page which has a community of over 330,000 members.

46 Responses to “Alankar (Figure of Speech)”

  1. Desna 5 September 2012 at 2:32 pm #

    Thank you soo much fr this blog!
    Its soo helpful!
    Simple…! n easy…!

  2. Shyam Vithalani 15 September 2012 at 7:23 pm #

    It helped a lot
    Thank you soooo much
    But I wud like to give a suggestion dat if u r explaining wat is alankar den u shudder also provide some additional examples or exercises related to it
    It will give u more publicity and u can earn well…..

  3. drishti 1 October 2012 at 5:49 am #

    thanks guyyssss
    it helped me a lot………….
    god bless u ……………..<3

  4. Ajay menghani 3 December 2012 at 5:42 am #

    Good .
    I really liked it.
    Knowledgeable .

  5. Sparsh 30 December 2012 at 6:56 am #

    nyc ….

  6. preetpurewal 12 January 2013 at 6:42 am #

    I really liked it.
    Knowledgeable .

  7. praveen 18 February 2013 at 2:40 pm #

    Thanks very much on studying this I passed 12 th standard thank u very very very very much…BUT utpreksha alankar is missing…:-(

  8. Jack 1 May 2013 at 12:04 am #

    Great resource. Thanks.

  9. VICKY LALLER 6 May 2013 at 5:14 am #

    Thanxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. lot of helpfull it is……..

  10. Archana singh 28 June 2013 at 3:47 pm #

    It is very useful n easy to understand also.thanx

  11. Tanvi 15 September 2013 at 10:44 am #

    I really liked it. Tomorrow is my hindi exam and alankar will come. it is not proper in my book. Thnxxx for this. Its really nyc and helpful…. thnxx a lot

  12. Asmita 19 September 2013 at 11:36 am #

    Very easy and simple way to explain. Nice one….so that i can teach Figure of speech in English and Alankar in Hindi to my students.

  13. AMRIT 24 September 2013 at 4:25 pm #

    GRET 1

  14. kratika 28 September 2013 at 11:17 am #

    thank u

  15. Kushal Chakrabarti 28 October 2013 at 1:36 pm #

    Very superb blog, but though it would be nice to see more examples.

  16. sushant 19 November 2013 at 8:05 pm #

    its a vary good porter for hindi readers

  17. anshu 12 December 2013 at 10:13 am #

    very nyc
    thank u

  18. vrati 21 December 2013 at 2:51 pm #

    thanx for ur blog its really helpul for me to now deal with hindi

  19. Pari 1 January 2014 at 10:37 am #

    This is very helpful.
    Just to give you advice that you should also give some examples of alankar, as Shyam Vitalani said.
    From Pari Devkashi.

  20. deowrat 18 January 2014 at 2:12 am #

    sahi me bahut acha tha……thanku

  21. Abhimanyu 22 January 2014 at 3:32 pm #

    Exactly what I wanted…. Thanks

  22. Anshuman 22 January 2014 at 5:12 pm #

    Atisyokti alankar hanuman ki puch me lagan n pai aag lanka sari jal gai gai nisachar bhag

  23. Jhilloooo 29 January 2014 at 6:46 am #

    Helped a lot, Thankyou so much (:

  24. Sumit 18 February 2014 at 2:33 am #

    Atishyokti alankaar– Anushuman ko maar maar ke bandar bana diya..

  25. Shashi 4 March 2014 at 11:51 am #

    Thanks Helped A lot

  26. harshit 4 March 2014 at 11:53 am #


  27. Anu Singh 4 March 2014 at 6:43 pm #

    thnx a lot, it really helped me a lot but i suggest you to give more examples and should also include other alankars

  28. Arpan 7 March 2014 at 2:39 am #

    But among arthalankars, manviyakaran and utpreksha alankar seem to be missing. Great blog anyways.

  29. Samuel 10 March 2014 at 1:17 pm #

    Thanks guys . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . they after tomorrow is my hindi exam

  30. Saif 12 March 2014 at 2:46 pm #

    Thank you Very much . you helped me in my class xth examinations. I liked the way you have compared Alankar with English literary poetic devices.

  31. palash 12 March 2014 at 3:58 pm #


  32. Bhumika 14 March 2014 at 2:36 am #

    thnx… compairing hindi with english poetic device and explaining is a nice thought. it really helped me. but u could aad few more examples… :)

  33. mitali 21 March 2014 at 11:15 am #


  34. mahalakshmi 10 April 2014 at 6:38 am #

    thanks for helping me

  35. Chandrani 16 April 2014 at 1:22 pm #

    where is the utprekxa alankar..?
    it is missing

  36. Ragini 5 September 2014 at 1:47 pm #

    Thank you so much for such answer which is easy to learn a hard topic

  37. sonali 22 September 2014 at 2:31 pm #

    What is utprecha alankar

  38. Sidharth 22 September 2014 at 4:14 pm #

    It Is Very Helpful
    But can’t the example from Rupak alankar also be Anupras Alankar?

  39. Satyam 29 September 2014 at 12:25 pm #

    this is very interested website…. Actually I want download this in my phone as a app but there’s no sort of thing there….

  40. Alvira 29 September 2014 at 3:05 pm #

    Helped me a lot but manvikaran and utpreksha is missing

  41. Jatin 21 October 2014 at 2:18 pm #

    Well explained,,
    awesome stuff..
    but if some more examples would b given..then 5 out of 5 star.

  42. akshay 19 November 2014 at 5:45 am #

    this Nitin, good to have this for quick reference keep up the good work. rgds, Akshay

  43. Tarun 21 November 2014 at 12:45 am #

    Its Awesome….Thanks it helped me!

  44. Vinod 4 December 2014 at 10:27 am #

    Very Nice !n thanku !

  45. Abhyuday Tripathi 6 December 2014 at 5:35 pm #

    these are the nice definations explain the people who visit on this site sab chis ki acche se paribhasha de whoee hai to jo iss site ko visit kare unn ke liye aasan hai

  46. pallavi 20 December 2014 at 9:15 am #

    Ty soo much ! I was soo confused about this … and my teacher didn’t explain it properly…. had this website not been there, i would have failed

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