Definition of tone language in English:

tone language


  • A language in which variations in pitch distinguish different words.

    • ‘Krio is non-rhotic, syllable-timed, and a tone language.’
    • ‘Only a worldwide, comparative program of experiments can resolve the question of whether to mark tones in any given tone language at all, and if so, how much.’
    • ‘What we needed, then, were real examples of spontaneously written text in a tone language that, like Efik, has no written literary tradition of its own.’
    • ‘The Tlingit language is a tone language that has 24 sounds not found in English.’
    • ‘There are a vast number of languages that are known as tone languages or tonal languages.’


tone language