Meaning of mondegreen in English:


Pronunciation /ˈmɒndəɡriːn/


  • A misunderstood or misinterpreted word or phrase resulting from a mishearing of the lyrics of a song.

    ‘So I listened to it several times, wondering if my perception of it might be a mondegreen.’
    • ‘Of course, you want to make sure that you don't become the victim of a mondegreen: that's a misheard lyric to you and me.’
    • ‘It's not a mondegreen because the mis-construal is not part of a song or poem or similar performance.’


1950s from Lady Mondegreen, a misinterpretation of the phrase laid him on the green, from the traditional ballad ‘The Bonny Earl of Murray’.