64 Examples of Oxymorons in Sentences

Oxymoron signs placed side by side

Oxymorons are figures of speech in which two contradictory terms are combined in order to create a rhetorical effect by paradoxical means. The word oxymoron is derived from the Greek for pointedly foolish (oxys = sharp/keen and moros = foolish). Oxymorons are extremely useful in written English because they can make effective titles, add dramatic effect, add flavor to speech, and can sometimes be used to achieve a comedic effect. Here is a comprehensive list of 64 examples of oxymorons in sentences. In each example, the oxymoron is underlined.

Examples of Oxymorons in Sentences

  1. This is another fine mess you have got us into.
  2. There is a real love hate relationship developing between the two of them.
  3. Suddenly the room filled with a deafening silence.
  4. The comedian was seriously funny.
  5. You are clearly confused by the situation you have found yourself in.
  6. Her singing was enough to raise the living dead.
  7. Do you have the original copies that we requested?
  8. This is a genuine imitation Rolex watch.
  9. I really would like to try that new jumbo shrimp restaurant.
  10. His new girlfriend really is pretty ugly.
  11. Sorry, I can’t help you out right now, I am involved in my own minor crisis.
  12. Give me the fifty dollars you owe me or pay for dinner, it’s the same difference.
  13. My trip to Bali was very much a working holiday.
  14. I let out a silent scream as the cat walked through the door carrying a dead bird.
  15. You are going to have to use proofreading services, it is your only choice.
  16. The seventies was the era of free love.
  17. I will ask the professor for his unbiased opinion.
  18. The constant variable is the one that does not change.
  19. The sermon lasted for an endless hour.
  20. We laughed and cried through the tragic comedy.
  21. Parting is such sweet sorrow.
  22. They couldn’t wait to get out alone together.
  23. We’ll use plastic glasses at the picnic.
  24. The student teacher explained how to complete dissertation editing.
  25. The gossip is old news.
  26. The lady he eventually married is painfully beautiful.
  27. Wow! This ice cream is disgustingly delicious.
  28. Be careful in the playground, run slowly.
  29. Your apple pie is awfully good.
  30. A small crowd gathered to watch the concert.
  31. It’s an open secret that they have been having an affair for the past six months.
  32. He has a real passive aggressive personality.
  33. You were awfully lucky to escape the car crash unscathed.
  34. Stop being a big baby.
  35. I am sure I am growing smaller as I get older.
  36. She is my least favorite relation.
  37. The story was based on the concept of  a true myth.
  38. That is an example of the typically weird behavior she continually demonstrates.
  39. He has become an extremely unpopular celebrity.
  40. I’m on a heavy diet until my wedding day.
  41. I am a deeply superficial person.
  42. I like a smuggler. He is the only honest thief.
  43. Good grief, we’re really late.
  44. I can’t make any promises but it’s a definite possibility.
  45. She was terribly pleased with her Birthday present.
  46. The army returned friendly fire as the enemy approached.
  47. He installed the new wireless cable in the television room.
  48. He was forced to stand down from his position as president.
  49. There will be zero tolerance in the future.
  50. I had no choice but to do what I was told.


Funny, Sarcastic and Cynical Oxymorons:

  1. Microsoft Works
  2. Military intelligence
  3. Government organization
  4. American history
  5. Business ethics
  6. Butt Head
  7. Temporary tax increase
  8. Twelve-ounce pound cake
  9. Express Mail
  10. Marital bliss
  11. Congressional ethics
  12. Airline Food
  13. President Bush
  14. Peace Keeper Missile

Can you think of any examples of oxymorons in sentences? Leave a comment and share them with us all.

For more figurative language examples, see our guide to onomatopoeia.

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