Examples of Oxymoron and How to Use Them Effectively in Your Everyday Life

Examples of Oxymoron are best way to understand them clearly. Unless you see them work in Examples of Oxymoron you might not get a better clarity on what Oxymoron are. I guess you have read about them in academics that they are pairs of contradictory words happen to come together. However, upon asked to name a few of those pairs, you might find yourself at your wits end.

Therefore, the present post aims at giving you a clue as to how you would easily recall this Oxymoron thing. In a nutshell Oxymoron are true representative of phrase “the same difference”. Got the clue? If not, see this: “I am happily married for 10 years”. Are you still clueless?

If so, most likely you are into habit of using these pairs so naturally, that you are least conscious about actually using Oxymoron.

Best way to know and remember the Oxymoron is to see them into action in a written form. So down the lines we will see them playing roles in actual practical sentences.

What are Oxymoron- The Academic Angle

Oxymoron are figure of speech containing a pair of words that literally contradict each other. Basically, the words are incongruous and they do not work on literal meaning. If you take them basis their literal meaning, you might mark the usage as logically incorrect.

Basically, there are lot of rhetorical devices in literature that help you make your verbal or oral expressions evocative. Oxymoron is one of the important rhetoric devices. You can use them for creating a dramatic, comedic, humorous, funny, wondering, pondering or simply laughable effect.

An oxymoron is seemingly a self-conflicting, self-cancelling, or contradictory combination of words that occur side by side. Such figures of speech can be humorous, thought-provoking, memorable, and stimulating imagination and creativity at times.

Thus, Oxymoron bring up two words with opposite meaning together to create a verbally puzzling, yet engaging and rhetorical effect.

Origin of Oxymorons

The word oxymoron is derived from the Greek, literally meaning pointedly foolish.  Break up of this word is here: oxys = sharp/keen and moros = foolish. Oxymorons are are part of rhetorical instruments available in literature. Whereas, rhetorics can  do a number of jobs most importantly catching attention of audience, persuasion, motivation and the likes.

Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, has some classic example of Oxymoron. At one place Romeo strings together thirteen Oxymorons in a row:

“O brawling love! O loving hate!  

O anything of nothing first create!

O heavy lightness, serious vanity!  

Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms!

Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health!

Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!

This love feel I, that feel no love in this.”

As the civilization and hence literature evolved, the literati even discovered single word Oxymorons like ass-backwards, upside-down, pre-posterous and the likes.

So, back to seeing the Oxymorons in action! While, “pointedly foolish” the literal meaning of OXYMORON is itself an oxymoron, we have 100 of them below:

Examples of Oxymorons- The Comprehensive List

  1. She looked barely clothed from distance.
  2. Would you believe that the performance was a terribly good one.
  3. There erupted a civil war towards the end of his tenure.
  4. My little son has got us into another fine mess.
  5. A true love hate relationship is what portrays a couple.
  6. A deafening silence in the hall all of a sudden heightened my curiosity.
  7. I needed a new wireless cable, visiting technician told me.
  8. Members forced him to stand down from his position as Chairman
  9. Govt is devising a zero tolerance policy for ceasefires.
  10. I had no choice but to seek his help.
  11. The women by his side looked pretty ugly to me.
  12. I am sure, the minor crisis would not be able to back him down.
  13. Give me my Rs 100 or pay my taxi fare it’s the same difference.
  14. Crawford market is popular for sale of genuine imitation Ray Ban Sun glasses.
  15. I really liked the jumbo shrimp delicacy of the hotel.
  16. The time is constant variable So, do not worry about current hardships.
  17. Remember that miseries do not last for an endless hour.
  18. The tragic comedy made us laugh and cry all through.
  19. Although, its a definite possibility, I do not like making commitments.
  20. My wife was terribly pleased with the Birthday present I gave her.
  21. Our Defence returned friendly fire as the enemy touched the yellow line.
  22. Ice Creams are my least favorite pastime.
  23. The story looked a true myth.
  24. This was a typically weird behavior which I never expected from her.
  25. I found that boy to be awfully good.
  26. A small crowd gathered to celebrate the last week air strike on terrorists.
  27. It’s an open secret that Anu had been in love with me.
  28. My soldier friend has some real passive aggressive personality.
  29. For his last reactions to media he has become an extremely unpopular celebrity.
  30. I’m on a heavy diet until I get instructions from doctor.
  31. He behaves like a deeply superficial person.
  32. The gossip is old news.
  33. His new girlfriend is painfully beautiful.
  34. The food we had last night was disgustingly delicious.
  35.  Do run slowly, else it might harm you.
  36. Parting with my husband for a week was a sweet sorrow as I was  going to Dad’s home.
  37. Couple couldn’t wait to get out alone together.
  38. Use plastic glasses so that they can be scrapped easily.
  39. My colleague is a seriously funny fellow.
  40. You found him clearly confused under the situation
  41. The motivational speech by her moved even the living dead.
  42. Please get me the original copies of the documents.
  43. I don’t want to go for a working holiday.
  44. The little boy let out a silent scream when he saw the scaring gunman passing.
  45. Taking help of some experts remains my only choice.
  46. There is nothing of free love as such.
  47. Do not fall for unbiased opinions all across the web instead, see an expert in person.
  48. The student teacher duo explained the thesis to the audience.
  49. I was awfully lucky to have escaped the car crash.
  50. Please stop being a big baby, my wife shouted.
  51. If you are growing smaller as you get older, see some mental doctor.
  52. During Interrogation I found him the only honest thief.
  53. Good grief, we’re really late.
  54. I could not stop my joyful tears.
  55. Personality wise he is naturally weird.
  56. His wasn’t active as expected and his absent presence saddened me greatly.
  57. Do you think Ambani’s have beggarly riches?
  58. You can call him cheerful pessimist for he doesn’t accept the greener things right away.
  59. So, the clearly misunderstood man was before me that day.
  60. He is not in hurry to change his financial conditions, comfortable misery is going to remain for long.
  61. His conspicuous absence startled all his seniors that day.
  62. Youths of today have cool passion which you cannot imagine years back.
  63. The aeroplane had to undergo a crash landing.
  64. The stories of his cruel kindness won everybody’s heart.
  65. Although seemingly not, he is deceptively honest.
  66. Mohan in any case would perform at deliberate speed only.
  67. Friends call me a devout atheist as I am busy promoting atheism seriously.
  68. The veteran was in his seventies and his dull roar could not sufficiently catalyze the mob.
  69. Every body was spellbound at his speech and the eloquent silence could be easily perceived.
  70. Kindly send me exact estimate so that the committee may decide the further course of action.
  71. The first hand appearance of maoist struck village was of an extinct life.
  72. Faith unfaithful kept him falsely true.
  73. You could well observe the festive tranquility inside mall.
  74. The child was found missing, upon the parents return.
  75.  The outer surface of vegetable could be witnessed having freezer burn.
  76. Assumption of office by new boss was a friendly takeover ceremony.
  77. My friend who was hosting this reality show is not keeping well so I am your guest host for today.
  78. This is one of the finest examples of historical present narration.
  79. Although the U.S. has humane slaughter laws, they provide very little protection to pigs, cows, sheep and goats.
  80. The balm has an icy hot effect and took my joint pains away in no time.
  81. Surprisingly he is destined to an ill health despite best treatments from therapist.
  82. To my understanding, his idea looks an impossible solution.
  83. This is all result of intense apathy from the govt in power.
  84. He tried to connect to the being there, but all he got was this joyful sadness. When we reminisce on the past, we often experience a whirl of joyful sadness.
  85. when we look at the larger half of the Fortune 500, we see among a common element with each.
  86. The intimacies between neighbors was a Lascivious Grace. 
  87. It went down like a lead balloon and caused caused disappointment to his well wishers. His four year story is a lead balloon.
  88. Use of Liquid Marble is gaining the momentum as furnishing material these days.
  89. I have seen this band almost in every grand function, I think they are the living end! He is liked by every girl of the college, he is truly the living end as far as his girlfriend is concerned.
  90. To my best understanding, these are loosely sealed regulations prone to be violated.
  91. I could hear the loud whisper of thieves from adjacent room “move slowly, lest we get caught”
  92. Shiv Sena practiced the ethos of a loyal opposition in best possible way.
  93. He was an artist of magic realism genre.
  94. I am not only a pacifist but a militant pacifist. I am willing to fight for peace.
  95. Paralysed people can now function by blinking, and those who have seen them regard it as a minor miracle.
  96. Country’s Economy is facing negative growth for last two years.
  97. A group of economists believe that a negative income tax would benefit low-income families more than welfare, but it isn’t that simple.
  98. That fellow is versatile instrument player and is a successful one-man band today.
  99. This cunning fellow is openly deceptive, you cannot believe him.
  100. I have seen his simplicity, overbearingly modest could be a good term to call him.
  101. Today paper tablecloth come in all varieties.
  102. Use this paper towel, it feels very soft to skin.
  103. I do not agree that independence of India was a peaceful conquest.
  104. He took out a long paper tablecloth, paper plates, plastic silverware, party napkins and headed towards the farm house.
  105. The poor health is marring his scope of being selected for defence services.
  106. The random order issued in the last evening from our boss made us attend the office following day too.
  107. The material recorded live was sent for police investigation.
  108. My friend Ramesh is resident alien in the USA so he is taxed as an normal US Citizen.
  109. His sad smile was telling the untold grief within him.
  110. If you too would have a look of his articles, you would certainly rate them all seriously funny.
  111. By first appearance, his shrewd dumbness can never be made out.
  112. I could understand the mental agony behind her silent scream. Upon staring at his face I figured It was the silent scream of a person who had unknowingly eaten beef contaminated with mad cow disease. I saw her mouth still open in the silent scream, but her eyes weren’t popping anymore.
  113. He is emerging star of soft rock.
  114. This pressure regulator fitted in middle of the pipe ensures static flow of water all the time.
  115. Let use Steel wool to get this metal artwork shine once again.
  116. Frankly speaking, theoretical experience of what ever measure is not going to help you in the job market.
  117. His composition are close to a true fiction work.
  118. My god, his True Lies witnessed by us is simply unexpected.
  119. He is too much into the subject, unconscious awareness is best to describe his state of mind.
  120. His upward fall is going to be dealt with by a special radical group.
  121. In my friend Basant, I have seen an innocence of a Wise fool.
  122. Hey, you must have some Business ethics.
  123. It was a Marital bliss for the couple for, they were having a strained relation.
  124. Govt went for a temporary tax increase.
  125. What President Bush had planned then?
  126. Military intelligence was there with regard to yesterday attacks.
  127. Government organization are not supposed to work like this.
  128. We should learn from American history.
  129. Its well know n fact that Microsoft Works.
  130. What Congressional ethics you are talking about?
  131. Only a Butt Head would commit such a mistake.
  132. I ordered for Twelve-ounce pound cake.
  133. Send that by an Express Mail to save my time
  134. The Airline Food are not that healthy either.
  135. India needs a Peace Keeper Missile as her messages are not taken seriously.
  136. You will certainly be confused with his Noyes.
  137. Your Nook really doesn’t matter much for me.

Examples of Oxymoron (Explanations)

*78. In linguistics and rhetoric historical present /historic present/dramatic present/ narrative present  is the employment of the present tense when narrating past events. You can learn here how to use the present tense to describe past event ( historical present tense)

*80. Icy Hot is a topical pain reliever that is used for minor arthritis pain, aching joints, and sore muscles. Menthol and methyl salicylates are known as counter-irritants and exhibit icy hot effects. They work by causing the skin to feel cool and then warm. These feelings on the skin distract you from feeling the aches/pains deeper in your muscles, joints, and tendons. Icy Hot is also one of the most popular pain-relieving brands in the world today.

*84. The state of co-existence of Sadness and joy.

*85. Larger half- is upper half that has more weightage on other counts.

*86. Lascivious is Feeling or revealing an overt sexual interest or desire. lewd, smutt, filthy etc. Example: She gave him a lascivious wink. The Lascivious Grace is a dramatic short inspired by the themes and characters of Shakespeare’s collection of 154 sonnets about a love triangle.

*87. Means Utter Failure.

*88. Liquid Marble is DIY decorative flooring kit that creates stunning resin floors and is a genuine alternative to tiles, carpet, timber and vinyl. They are made of hydrophopic elements.

*89. he most exceptional, superlative, or extreme example of something. The phrase can be used both positively and negatively.

*90.  To make or become less strict, tight, firmly attached, compact, etc.

*91. To shout in a subdued voice, shout as discreetly as possible, hiss (to say something in a quiet angry way)
Shut up, You!” she hissed.

92* In parliamentary systems of government, the loyal opposition is the opposition parties in the legislature. The word loyal indicates that the non-governing parties may oppose the actions of the sitting cabinet while remaining loyal to the source of the government’s power.

*93. Magical realism/ magic realism/ marvelous realism is a style of fiction that paints a realistic view of the modern world while also adding magical elements. It is sometimes called fabulism, in reference to the conventions of fables, myths, and allegory. Matthew Strecher defines magic realism as “what happens when a highly detailed, realistic setting is invaded by something too strange to believe”. Roh believed that magic realism was related to, but distinct from, surrealism, due to magic realism’s focus on the material object and the actual existence of things in the world, as opposed to surrealism’s more cerebral, psychological and subconscious reality. Magic realism was first used by German art critic Franz Roh in 1925 to refer to a painterly style also known as Neue Sachlichkeit (the New Objectivity)

*94. Militant Pacifism is a term to describe violent action toward a goal supposedly to prevent war or, the development or use of certain weapons of war. It was first coined toward Greenpeace and Albert Einstein when they attacked several US buildings in December 1941 to prevent the development of Nuclear Weapons. Even in the 21st century, Militant Pacifism is still a world problem, and is labelled as such by various UN member states. It is considered one of the major tasks to deal with alongside poverty, hunger and the use of fossil fuels by 2020.

*95. An improbable, unexpected, or surprising achievement or other occurrence that is fortunate and agreeable. minor miracle does not usually refer to an event having a divine origin.

*96. Negative growth is a contraction in business sales or earnings. It is also used to refer to a contraction in a country’s economy,  which is reflected in a decrease in its gross domestic product (GDP) during any quarter of a given year. Negative growth is typically expressed as a negative percentage rate.

*97. Negative income tax (NIT) is an alternative to welfare suggested by, among other proponents, economist Milton Friedman in his 1962 book Capitalism and Freedom. NIT proponents assert that every American without income above the threshold for tax liability should have a basic income guarantee. Such a system has been discussed by economists but never fully implemented.

*98. A one-man band is a musician who plays a number of instruments simultaneously using their hands, feet, limbs, and various mechanical or electronic contraptions. One-man bands also often sing while they perform.

*104 Plastic Silverware are all sorts of plastic dishes plates etc normally used in the formal occasions for partying etc with a coating of something that brightens like silver. Disposable plates for Snacks are good example featuring the brightening of silver, these are paper silverware.

*108  A resident alien is a foreign person who is a permanent resident of the country in which he or she resides but does not have citizenship. To fall under this classification in the United States, a person needs to either have a current green card or have had one in the previous calendar year

*113. Soft rock is a derivative form of pop rock that originated in the late 1960s in southern California and in the United Kingdom. The style smoothed over the edges of singer-songwriter and pop rock, relying on simple, melodic songs with big, lush productions.

*115.  Steel wool is commonly used as abrasive by woodworkers, metal craftsmen, and jewelers to clean and smooth working surfaces and give them shine. Steel wool/iron wool/ wire wool/steel wire/ wire sponge is a bundle of very fine and flexible sharp-edged steel filaments.

120. Upward fall is not the downward plunge to some lower level of being,  lower rung of ladder on morality and freedom,  rather it is an upward rebellion, an invasion of the realm of things “above”, the usurping of divine prerogative. Basically used to denote attribute o a person trying to become god, denying his existence and seeking blasphemous measures by action or statements.

*121. People believe it mostly to be a literary character (but can exist too) who is empty-headed,  dull-witted, feeble-minded, and lacks understanding, he is either inarticulate or babbles incoherently  and is given to boisterous merrymaking, that he does not recognize the codes of propriety and loves to mock others; that he acts like a child; and that he has a natural simplicity and innocence of heart. This ability to be reckless, honest, and free with language has greatly contributed to the wise fool’s popularity in the literary imagination.

*136. Noyes .. No +Yes

*137. Nook .. No+ Ok

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