Definition of speech in English:

speech

noun

  • 1mass noun The expression of or the ability to express thoughts and feelings by articulate sounds.

    ‘he was born deaf and without the power of speech’
    • ‘His open mouth and engaged expression unmistakably indicate speech.’
    • ‘Some scientists suggest that it was a refinement in the vocal tract, allowing a greater range of sounds for speech.’
    • ‘They acted in perfect harmony with each other, in speech, facial expression and body language.’
    • ‘According to the dictionary, collocation is the way words combine in a language to produce natural sounding speech and writing.’
    • ‘Artificially generated speech now sounds more human, and has become more intelligible.’
    • ‘One of the most compelling is the marked improvement of our ability to understand speech if we can observe the speaker's lips moving.’
    • ‘I'm sure I read somewhere that only 20% of communication is speech.’
    • ‘They will not improve speech or the ability to swallow, prevent falls, or improve fine motor control.’
    • ‘For hearing and understanding, it required neuro-cognitive networks capable of distinguishing the sounds of human speech and decoding them.’
    • ‘What they needed, I thought, was some way to communicate without speech.’
    • ‘I'd long since lost the ability to understand human speech.’
    • ‘In the rapid-fire flow of conversational speech, words are not fully articulated.’
    • ‘His ears twitched at the sound of speech, far away.’
    • ‘In sensory or receptive aphasia, there is a problem with comprehension, and affected people produce speech that sounds fluent but is actually nonsensical or full of meaningless jargon.’
    • ‘The man's voice was weak, an accent coming through as he lost the ability to control his speech.’
    • ‘The result is computer-generated speech that sounds more realistic.’
    • ‘For most patients, their appearance, comfort, speech and ability to chew and enjoy food are vastly improved.’
    • ‘Their research could have implications for discovering how the developing brain processes sound and speech.’
    • ‘Even if one is blessed with the senses of touch, smell, speech and hearing, it is sight that gives shape to imagination.’
    • ‘This device transmits sound signals directly to the brain, enabling the person to hear certain sounds and speech.’
    speaking, talking, verbal communication, verbal expression, articulation
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    1. 1.1 A person's style of speaking.
      ‘she wouldn't accept his correction of her speech’
      • ‘Linguists such as Robin Lakoff have long recognized the existence of these typically male and female styles of speech.’
      • ‘Jamaicans adapt their speech to the social context of the moment.’
      • ‘His style of speech owed more to the old-style BBC accent than to either Scotland or Ulster.’
      • ‘I was awed by his articulate speech and ability to charm.’
      • ‘Since the 16th c, the term has been used in English for styles of speech that mark people off from each other, principally by region.’
      • ‘His vocabulary and manner of speech sounded as though it belonged to a British nobleman, but his voice was that of a typical New York male of his age.’
      • ‘His soothing, mannered style of speech and genuine affection for his film kept my attention throughout the duration of the commentary.’
      • ‘The voice contained characteristics similar to his style of speech, particularly his typically slow and drawn out pronunciation.’
      • ‘Television's Mr. Rogers is a good example of this style of speech.’
      • ‘His accent slurred his speech, and he jumped from register to register as he spoke, as though speaking in sing-song.’
      • ‘Frequently, the tone of their speech is flat and unexpressive.’
      • ‘Ivy winced and tried to tone her speech down to that of a layman.’
      • ‘From specific costuming decisions to styles of speech, each character gives us an impression of how a subset of American culture may have acted or behaved at the time.’
      • ‘The dialog might be poorly written, but it helps distinguish characters simply by the tone or style of their speech.’
      • ‘Each has an idiosyncratic style of dress and speech.’
      • ‘The Japanese language includes sharply divergent styles of speech for men and women.’
      • ‘The people here are darker and more heavily built and have a different lilt to their speech.’
      • ‘Her speech was also slow and hesitant.’
      • ‘The mother said, her accent giving her speech a melodious tone.’
      • ‘She had an excellent ear for accents and individual styles of speech, but otherwise did not alter her voice drastically.’
      diction, elocution, manner of speaking, articulation, enunciation, pronunciation
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  • 2A formal address or discourse delivered to an audience.

    ‘he gave a speech about the company’
    • ‘Formal and lengthy speeches accompany the presentation of a whale's tooth.’
    • ‘The VIP guests and the public will then meet in the Atlantic hotel, Enniscrone for formal speeches and refreshments.’
    • ‘But his tendency towards dull speeches, opaque language and meandering responses to questions almost undid him.’
    • ‘Former president, now private citizen, Bill Clinton, giving his farewell speech to the nation Thursday night.’
    • ‘There had been speeches, entertainers, music and dancing.’
    • ‘In effect he has been giving daytime speeches with tiny audiences.’
    • ‘The manner in which he conducted branch meetings or indeed his professionalism in his delivery of addresses and speeches at formal functions would be sadly missed.’
    • ‘In August 2001 he addressed the issue in one of the most morally serious speeches ever delivered by a U.S. President.’
    • ‘Formal speeches were delivered at the main gate but were drowned out by a low flying army helicopter.’
    • ‘Clement delivered the best speeches and he shone in debates.’
    • ‘I think the whole region is awaiting the speech of the president.’
    • ‘He loved listening to her when she made long speeches, or delivered lectures.’
    • ‘Once in a while, I will have to make a speech to the nation.’
    • ‘Delegates then applauded his work and the help he gave our region after his speech.’
    • ‘He stepped into the clearing and began to give a speech in another language.’
    • ‘Finally finishing her speech she uttered a few last words.’
    • ‘Breaking with tradition, the graduates conducted the ceremony in English and translated speeches into their native language for the audience.’
    • ‘I gave a speech to the nation that was cleared by the intelligence services.’
    • ‘At 81, he can get the full attention of an audience while delivering a speech or singing a song..’
    • ‘Before that, President Bush will deliver two more speeches in his drive to try to regain public confidence about progress in that troubled country.’
    talk, address, lecture, discourse, oration, disquisition, peroration, declamation, deliverance, presentation
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    1. 2.1 A sequence of lines written for one character in a play.
      ‘Antony's speech over Caesar's body’
      • ‘Other cassettes sport Agatha Christie tales and one cassette in particular is all about the great speeches by famous characters in various Shakespearean plays.’
      • ‘And then in the middle of my long speech I forgot my lines.’
      words, role, part, script, dialogue
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Origin

Old English sprǣc, sprēc, later spēc, of West Germanic origin: related to Dutch spraak, German Sprache, also to speak.

Pronunciation

speech

/spiːtʃ/