Definition of speaking in English:



mass noun
  • 1The action of conveying information or expressing one's feelings in speech.

    ‘clear thinking aids clear speaking’
    • ‘They were looking through a book and speaking quietly.’
    • ‘He stopped speaking, and the silence was deafening.’
    • ‘Chrissy continued speaking, but this time, she didn't stutter.’
    • ‘She self consciously tried speaking in a softer tone.’
    • ‘she turned to look at him in his eyes and stopped speaking.’
    • ‘She cleared her throat and tried speaking evenly.’
    • ‘The middle-aged man continued speaking before I could answer.’
    • ‘Mono stopped speaking as he read the note further.’
    • ‘Our first time speaking didn't go over all that well.’
    • ‘The eldest member of the crew was the one speaking.’
    • ‘Sheriff Masters said nothing and continued speaking.’
    • ‘He would look over at me every time I stopped speaking.’
    • ‘Jasmin rolled her eyes and continued speaking.’
    • ‘It was very enjoyable speaking with you and I'm looking forward to future discussions.’
    • ‘Usually they noticed her presence and ceased speaking.’
    • ‘Tommy looked at the wall and continued speaking.’
    • ‘He collapsed back into his seat but continued speaking.’
    • ‘Jennifer ignored them both and continued speaking.’
    • ‘He demonstrated his impressive intellectual aptitude and capacity for clear speaking, along with some real political savvy.’
    • ‘He shifted his position a bit and continued speaking.’
    1. 1.1 The activity of delivering speeches.
      ‘public speaking’
      • ‘Until 1991, publications, radio broadcasts, and public speaking in many non-Turkish languages were legally prohibited.’
      • ‘It should be noted, this gentleman was a professor of public speaking.’
      • ‘They practice their public speaking in workshops attended by all.’
      • ‘Men have a monopoly in public speaking, landowning rights, and religious rituals.’
      • ‘Many people suffer from situational shyness - the thought of public speaking is enough to induce stomach butterflies in even the most socially confident.’
      • ‘Fear of public speaking is one of the greatest fears human beings have.’
      • ‘I hated public speaking, especially for people I didn't know.’
      • ‘I do a lot of public speaking on business issues and I was talking to another speaker when he asked what it is I talk about.’
      • ‘Cannock Chase Council has a protocol relating to public speaking at Planning Control Committee meetings.…’
      • ‘Although the physical dangers of public speaking have disappeared these days, the trepidation of that poor message bearer has not.’
      • ‘Isis was a very shy person, with an extreme dislike for public speaking.’
      • ‘With a degree in business & in public speaking, she was also good with snobby people.’
      • ‘Most people equate public speaking with public humiliation.’
      • ‘If you are not a professional charismatic, public speaking is probably not for you.’
      • ‘Why is it that one of our worst fears is public speaking?’
      • ‘His voice was rich and deep; he was obviously skilled at public speaking.’
      • ‘He seemed conspicuously stiff at public speaking.’
      • ‘Public speaking was never my strong point.’
      • ‘One of the pupils has shown a knack for public speaking.’
      • ‘How will public speaking affect the practice of law?’


  • 1attributive Used for or engaged in speech.

    ‘you have a clear speaking voice’
    • ‘He provided the speaking voice for main character Jack Skellington in The Nightmare Before Christmas.’
    • ‘He straightened out his suit and regained a normal speaking voice.’
    • ‘When you're booked for a speaking engagement, ask the host if news releases are being sent to the media.’
    • ‘He has a rich speaking voice and a wonderful deep chuckle.’
    • ‘On average, men have lower-pitched speaking voices than women.’
    • ‘I'm interested in the speaking voice and its various registers.’
    • ‘A traditional telephone converts your speaking voice into what's called ‘analog’ data.’
    • ‘She doesn't run in the park as often as she'd like or say yes to every speaking engagement she's asked to do.’
    • ‘Carradine had a wonderful mellow speaking voice which he uses to good effect in Bluebeard as well as a very expressive face.’
    • ‘She'd invented a character the public loved - a magic voice, a face from Vogue, and a giggly girl-next-door speaking voice.’
    • ‘She was starting to miss just hearing her mother's nagging and her Dad's firm speaking voice.’
    • ‘His dark and splendid speaking voice was both a boon and a welcome bonus.’
    • ‘I was thinking of people with good speaking voices.’
    • ‘His voice was slowly lowering itself back to normal speaking voice.’
    • ‘Lina has a terrible speaking voice.’
    • ‘The sound of his speaking voice hit Eider like an actual physical shock.’
    • ‘They can go on to receive lucrative speaking engagements, big-time jobs in the private sector, and favorable mentions in the history books.’
    • ‘There's deliciously crisp Scottish lilt to her speaking voice, which is sadly lost when she sings.’
    • ‘Ronald Reagan had a great speaking voice.’
    • ‘It was about an octave higher than Jake's usual speaking voice.’
    exact, faithful, true to life, authentic, genuine
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    1. 1.1in combination Able to communicate in a specified language.
      ‘an English-speaking guide’
    2. 1.2 Conveying meaning as though in words.
      ‘she gave him a speaking look’
      meaningful, significant, pointed, eloquent, expressive, pregnant, telltale, revealing, suggestive
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    3. 1.3 (of a portrait) so lifelike as to seem to be capable of speech.
      ‘a speaking likeness’
      realistic, true to life, representational, faithful, authentic, exact, precise, detailed, vivid, graphic, natural, naturalistic, convincing, undistorted
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  • on speaking terms

    • Polite or friendly towards someone, especially after an argument.

      ‘Maisie wasn't on speaking terms with any of her family’
      • ‘A week or so ago you two were barely on speaking terms.’
      • ‘Some travelling companions return home barely on speaking terms.’
      • ‘It was her fault we were barely on speaking terms.’
      • ‘Suffice to say, Hailey wasn't on speaking terms with her mother or her brother.’
      • ‘The couple wasn't on speaking terms since the argument.’
      • ‘He knows having her here is dangerous, especially since he and I are barely on speaking terms over her.’
      • ‘I read somewhere some time that you and your mother had not on speaking terms for quite a few years.’
      • ‘The date didn't work out but now the two of them are barely on speaking terms.’
      • ‘Although Leanne still couldn't forgive her mother, she was on speaking terms again.’
      • ‘At least Tierra and her mother were on speaking terms.’
  • —— speaking

    • Used to indicate the degree of accuracy intended in a statement or the point of view from which it is made.

      ‘generally speaking, I got on well with most of the playing staff’
  • speaking of

    • Used to introduce a remark about a topic recently alluded to.

      ‘speaking of cost, can I afford to buy it?’
      • ‘Now, speaking of your first mission, would you like to brief me on the exact details?’
      • ‘And speaking of Napoléon, his first wife, the Empress Josephine, had a living collection of more than 250 types of roses in her gardens at Malmaison.’
      • ‘And speaking of teams overstuffed with midfielders - Tottenham Hotspur appear finally to be moving towards closure on the Jermaine Jenas question.’
      • ‘And speaking of invisibles planes, where's Wonder Woman's invisible plane?’
      • ‘Speaking of riding, I want a word with the Dawn about the horses.’
      • ‘Well, speaking of which, let's not keep him waiting.’
      • ‘So, speaking of Jeff, I take it this means I can tell him he's free to get married now you've found someone else?’
      • ‘And speaking of images, we're not done with customizing this client.’
      • ‘Speaking of short, that's exactly what I am.’
      • ‘So speaking of guitars, which one are you bringing to try-outs?’
      on the subject of, about, concerning, apropos of, with reference to, speaking of, with regard to, with respect to, regarding, as regards, relating to, respecting, in connection with, as for, re
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