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Last Updated on March 17, 2020, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 60

Spoonerism - a phrase in which two words’ initial consonants have been switched deliberately for a humorous effect.

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The term comes from Reverend W. A. Spooner (1844 – 1930), Warden of New College, Oxford, who innocently switched the initial consonants of two words in specific phrases. An example is saying “the queer old dean” for the dear old queen.

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