Does Rhyming Have an Impact on Perceived Truthfulness of a Statement?

Statements that include rhyming words are more likely to be perceived as being true, research shows. In one study, two versions of aphorisms, or concise statements presenting general opinions or ideas, were presented to participants — one version that rhymed and another version that substituted a non-rhyming word that had the same meaning. Aphorisms containing words that rhyme, such as “birds of a feather flock together” were rated by participants as being more truthful than those that did not. Researchers believe this could be because the brain has an easier time processing rhymes, and people might mistake this ease as indicating truthfulness.

More about rhyming :

  • The first aphorisms are thought to have been created by ancient Greek physician Hippocrates.
  • Scientists believe that freestyle rappers who make up rhyming statements on the spot might be able to do so because the parts of their brains responsible for integrating information such as music and language are more active than those in the average person, making it easier to quickly access rhyming words.
  • Children’s author Theodor Seuss Geisel, or "Dr. Seuss," was well-known for his use of rhyme in his works. “The Cat in the Hat” was published in 1957 and by 2012 had sold 11 million copies worldwide.
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