Definition of articulate in English:



  • 1(of a person or a person's words) having or showing the ability to speak fluently and coherently.

    ‘an articulate account of their experiences’
    • ‘Yet the confusing thing about her mania, says Todd, is her ability to remain articulate, clever and funny.’
    • ‘He was an extremely articulate and coherent person - he knew what he wanted, he knew why he was doing it, and he didn't see why people should have a problem with it.’
    • ‘There, I spoke to an articulate grown-up, who took no more than two minutes to explain that the GPRS is still linked to the SIM in my old phone, but should be activated on my new one by tomorrow evening.’
    • ‘Of course, I didn't stop listening to American music, but it was true that, after grunge, this new literate, articulate and understandable music was welcome.’
    • ‘This was turning out to be one of those perfect neurological consultations: documents from another hospital, a witness account, an articulate patient.’
    • ‘I think it's a well-designed site, and there s absolutely no doubt that the chap that writes it is articulate, eloquent and well-read.’
    • ‘Payne is quietly spoken, articulate and thoughtful.’
    • ‘He is articulate, charismatic and persuasive.’
    • ‘Eminem does a sound job of reflecting the concerns of young America with articulate, intelligent lyrics and then he missteps.’
    • ‘I really enjoyed reading your email to Pitchfork; it was articulate and intelligently argued.’
    • ‘Celeste is an articulate, eloquent speaker with an electrifying style coming straight out of her deep pain and anger.’
    • ‘He paid tribute to Mr A, a friend since their teenage years, as ‘an intelligent, articulate graduate, with a lovely family’.’
    • ‘Indeed, as government ministers go he is one of the more articulate and intelligent.’
    • ‘And how ought we to communicate with an articulate and concerned minority that rejects the achievements of the past 30 years, and refuses to understand business, money or trade?’
    • ‘In fact, a 1936 survey found that the WEA had created an articulate and obstreperous working-class intelligentsia.’
    • ‘She said that he was a coherent, intelligent and articulate man but one with a tendency to ramble on.’
    • ‘I've spoken to a lot of people who just seem to have achieved an incredible ability to be articulate when talking about their problems.’
    • ‘Coming from a government official known for her composure, quick wit and ability to be articulate under heat, the weight of these words should not be ignored.’
    • ‘Raynal's Wrecked on a Reef is an articulate account written with great attention to the accurate recording of all the nasty, demanding details of their ordeal.’
    • ‘He's articulate, succinct and speaks with a quiet righteousness.’
    eloquent, fluent, communicative, effective, persuasive, coherent, lucid, vivid, expressive, silver-tongued, vocal
    cogent, illuminating, intelligible, comprehensible, understandable
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  • 2Having joints or jointed segments.

    • ‘Dangling from the head was an innumerable collection of articulate tentacles.’
    • ‘The epipodials are parallel, and both articulate with identifiable tarsal elements.’
    • ‘However, megalichthyids are unique in having the anal fin articulate with the spine at a position well posterior to the articulation of the second dorsal.’
    • ‘In the most recent classification they are considered a distinct class related to the articulate line.’
    hinged, jointed, segmented
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    1. 2.1Zoology Denoting a brachiopod that has projections and sockets that form a hinge joining the two halves of the shell.
      • ‘The articulate brachiopods, which would dominate the marine environment in the later Paleozoic, were still relatively rare and not especially diverse.’
      • ‘Terebratulids are one of the only two living orders of articulate brachiopods, the other being the Rhynchonellida.’
      • ‘The Strophomenata are a wholly Paleozoic class; one of the two classes of advanced articulate brachiopods.’
      • ‘The Atdabanian epoch saw the emergence of the calcareous shelled Nisusiidae, the earliest and most primitive of the articulate brachiopods.’
      • ‘Billingsella in contrast has a laminar secondary shell characteristic of other, quite distinct, groups of articulate brachiopods.’


  • 1[with object] Express (an idea or feeling) fluently and coherently.

    ‘they were unable to articulate their emotions’
    • ‘They have no means within the current political order to articulate their own interests or be heard.’
    • ‘However, he was unable to articulate his thoughts on the subject in a manner that would transform that abstract notion of humility into reality.’
    • ‘In the Manuscripts Marx clearly articulates the role of the human subject as mediator of the social objectivity.’
    • ‘Elementary-school children may more directly articulate their feelings of sadness or anger about a parent's departure.’
    • ‘Yet we often fail to articulate this doctrine clearly, even to ourselves.’
    • ‘If it continues to be a problem, they're going to have to speak up and articulate their position.’
    • ‘Your answers on the test indicate you're great at expressing yourself and can be at your best when articulating your ideas or communicating with others.’
    • ‘Looking back to my school days, I experienced a time when martial law was still in force, preventing us from publicly articulating our opinions or political inclinations.’
    • ‘Consider the students who are, say, slow to comprehend things, poor at conceptualising or articulating ideas, weak at recognising connections and interpreting relationships.’
    • ‘He is paralyzed by his inability to communicate or articulate his feelings.’
    • ‘It's difficult to summarize, since he doesn't articulate a clear political standpoint, and I recommend reading the whole thing.’
    • ‘How can a self-described ‘old-fashioned liberal and egalitarian’ like Asimov articulate such an elitist view?’
    • ‘And when people on the street are interviewed they are, as always, astonishingly good at articulating their fears and doubts.’
    • ‘He was clearly uncomfortable with the analogy, but does not clearly articulate many objections to it.’
    • ‘That's an idea that is seldom articulated carefully, but that, in fact, drives many people.’
    • ‘Camp programs attempt to address ethics and values; staff must be able to clearly articulate these values.’
    • ‘Even before the arrival of the Jesuits, many Christians in the East used local language and ideas to articulate their faith.’
    • ‘It has to be said that in terms of responding to the clearly defined and consistently articulated demands of the people of Down District, the performance of successive Health Ministers has left a lot to be desired.’
    • ‘They're smart enough to think about and articulate arguments coherently.’
    • ‘The key to that is somebody with at least a strong, identifiable personality, coupled with street smarts and a clearly articulated vision.’
    express, give expression to, voice, give voice to, vocalize, put in words, give utterance to, communicate, declare, state, set forth, bring into the open, make public, assert, divulge, reveal, proclaim, announce, raise, table, air, ventilate, vent, give vent to, pour out, mention, talk of, point out, go into
    utter, say, speak, enunciate, pronounce, mouth
    come out with
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    1. 1.1Pronounce (something) clearly and distinctly.
      ‘he articulated each word with precision’
      [no object] ‘people who do not articulate well are more difficult to lip-read’
      • ‘The recording is close, and the playing, though more expressive than was usual half a century ago, is rather too obtrusively articulated to serve as a model.’
      • ‘And how is it that this poignant instrumental, played on a lone 12-string acoustic, conveys more than the most passionately articulated protest song?’
      • ‘The built-in voice chip clearly articulates the word or phrase in the chosen language.’
      • ‘Dialogue is, for the most part, well placed and clearly articulated.’
      • ‘She had a thick Chechen accent but she articulated each word clearly.’
      • ‘His fleshless snout made stunted attempts at movement while he spoke, though his speech was clear and articulated.’
      • ‘Electronica, by contrast, is not about verbose, clearly articulated lyrics.’
      • ‘He thinks about matters from his perspective sensibly and clearly, and articulates them well.’
      • ‘Details that are often obscured in performances by lesser artists were clearly articulated.’
      • ‘The narration is clearly articulated and the video and audio quality is top notch for a low-budget presentation like this one.’
      • ‘Every sound and syllable is perfectly and distinctly articulated, granting the album a much greater capacity for detail and profundity.’
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  • 2[no object] Form a joint.

    ‘the mandible is a solid piece articulating with the head’
    • ‘The thyroid cartilage may articulate with the hyoid bone.’
    • ‘The maxillary process may articulate with the lacrimal hamulus.’
    • ‘The radius is still expanding and will ultimately articulate with three carpal bones.’
    • ‘The bones articulating within the capsule are covered by hyaline cartilage.’
    • ‘The femur, in the thigh, articulates at the hip joint with the pelvic girdle, linking the legs to the vertebral column via the sacro-iliac joints.’
    • ‘A sesamoid bone may be found in the superior peroneal retinaculum, articulating with the lateral malleolus.’
    • ‘The anterior arch may also have facets articulating with projections on the occipital bone.’
    • ‘Notice that the carpal bones do not articulate with the ulna.’
    • ‘The humeral head articulates proximally with the scapula and is held in the socket by ligaments and muscles collectively known as the rotator cuff.’
    • ‘The condyles articulate with the atlas; occasionally, a facet located on the anterior margin of the foramen magnum, the so-called third occipital condyle, articulates with the dens.’
    • ‘Any joint has two or more bones articulating with one another.’
    • ‘The head of the fibula doesn't contribute to the knee joint, but instead articulates with the inferior surface of the lateral condyle.’
    • ‘An enlarged hamulus may articulate with the maxillary process of the zygomatic bone.’
    • ‘The cartilage extends around the medial side where it articulates with the ulna.’
    • ‘At the lateral angle of the scapula, just inferior to the acromion, is a depression called the glenoid cavity which contributes to the shoulder joint by articulating with the head of the humerus.’
    • ‘The dorsal fins were supported by a basal element articulating with one vertebra each.’
    • ‘One can easily detect a well formed extra digit articulating with the fifth toe, corresponding to a postaxial polydactyly of type A.’
    • ‘The dorsal ribs articulate with ends of sternal ribs which attach to the sternum.’
    • ‘The base of each cartilage articulates with the superior border of the cricoid cartilage.’
    • ‘On its proximal end, the rounded head of the femur articulates with the coxal bone, within the acetabulum.’
    1. 2.1Be connected by joints.
      ‘the wing is articulated to the thorax’
      • ‘Half a pig skull, articulated with its mandible (lower jaw) and atlas (top neck vertebra), and a pig humerus were found near the man's upper left forearm.’
      • ‘This Troodon was an adult whose bones were still partly articulated, or joined together, a prize compared to the scattered and jumbled remains we were used to finding.’
      • ‘The labellum is fixed or, as in most cases, hinged and articulated at the base of the column.’
      • ‘Tower and wing are connected and articulated by a hinge point of vertical circulation, with a lift placed outside the building to minimize structural intrusion.’
      • ‘Part of one flipper remained articulated, perhaps still bound in connective tissue prior to burial.’


Mid 16th century: from Latin articulatus, past participle of articulare divide into joints, utter distinctly from articulus small connecting part (see article).