Definition of voice in English:

voice

noun

  • 1The sound produced in a person's larynx and uttered through the mouth, as speech or song.

    ‘Meg raised her voice’
    mass noun ‘a worried tone of voice’
    • ‘Stacey choked on the word as it left her mouth, her voice was full of emotion.’
    • ‘Once, when she was in elementary school, the nun stood at the front of a church filled with children out in the pews with their voices lifted in song.’
    • ‘Daniel likes to sing little songs in awful voices to make people laugh.’
    • ‘Thrust a mic to an opera singer's mouth and the voice is rendered flat, tinny, indistinct.’
    • ‘As she got closer, the music became clearer and she could make out the sound of pipes and drums and voices raised in song.’
    • ‘He reminded her of the wonderful gift of her voice raised in song but he could not persuade her to sing again.’
    • ‘The sound of their beautiful voices singing their joyous prayers, telling the story of Chek Chek and reiterating their simple creeds, followed us on our descent.’
    • ‘In song, the voices bounced off the walls of the church adding volume and creating a larger congregation than it really embraced.’
    • ‘It hurt just to open his mouth, and his voice did not sound the same when he did so.’
    • ‘Pennons snapped in the winds, and the smells of incense rose from two vast temples, to the peripheral sound of thousands of voices raised in loving adoration.’
    • ‘She yelped, but quickly shut her mouth as her voice echoed down the long stone hallway.’
    • ‘They kept repeating their beautiful song, their voices sounding better and better each time.’
    • ‘I love not being able to hear myself play the piano over the few hundred voices raised in song at church.’
    • ‘The whole museum rocked to the sound of happy voices singing ‘Twinkle Twinkle little star’ as each session ended.’
    • ‘The singing begins and your attention is on the beat of the drum, the sound of the rattle, and the men's voices captured in song.’
    • ‘By this time, the rain was pummelling the overhead skylight, but we just laughed and raised our voices.’
    • ‘She tells a story about one song - doing the voices of herself and her mother.’
    • ‘What took me completely by surprise was that it was me: my voice, in my mouth.’
    • ‘Although the masks do not cover the actors' mouths, the lower registers of some voices are lost when sound is trapped between mask and face.’
    • ‘Jackets and water proofs were donned, collars pulled up and voices raised in songs and chanting.’
    1. 1.1 The ability to speak or sing.
      ‘she'd lost her voice’
      • ‘When controllers picked up the voices of men speaking in Arabic and heavily accented English, they knew something was terribly wrong.’
      • ‘I waved my arms in the air above my head and nearly lost my voice while trying to sing along.’
      • ‘I never even got to sing, having lost my voice early on in the evening.’
      • ‘Two or three minutes later we heard him clapping, which he would do if he needed attention after he lost his voice from the radiotherapy.’
      • ‘Silence filled the room as the singer lost his voice, and the instruments faded away.’
      • ‘He couldn't understand what they were saying; too many voices were speaking at a time.’
      • ‘When she does speak though, her voice comes out clear and sounds very smooth.’
      • ‘Staff said she was unable to speak to the press as she had lost her voice, believed to be as a result of a cold.’
      • ‘In the ensuing struggle his larynx was crushed and he lost his voice for 18 months.’
      • ‘Maybe he tried too hard in rehearsals and lost his voice a bit by the final taping.’
      • ‘I lost my voice for a second but quickly recovered, though still nervous.’
      • ‘It would have been four hours long but he lost his voice from yelling too much.’
      • ‘My tongue is still a cold and distant stranger, but the thought speaks louder than my voice ever could.’
      • ‘My older brother Maniramji lost his voice in 1944 and could not even croak leave alone sing.’
      • ‘Ally, despite being very perceptive, didn't notice the pain in his voice as he spoke.’
      • ‘He remained very ill, lost his voice and contracted a chest infection which lasted for some weeks.’
      • ‘When she finally did speak, her voice was low and broken as though she were about to cry.’
      • ‘My mother and father were speaking in low voices about me.’
      • ‘No doubt he realised I was leaving, because the second he got his voice back, he spoke.’
      • ‘When at last he spoke, his voice was beguiling, and my senses seemed to calm of their own accord.’
      power of speech
      View synonyms
    2. 1.2usually voices The supposed utterance of a guiding spirit.
      ‘they were admitted to hospital after expressing paranoid ideas and hearing voices’
      • ‘Certain families resort to magico-religious remedies based on the belief that the voices are due to spirits and black magic.’
      • ‘She's loopy, see, and the suburbs are supposed to quiet the voices in her heads.’
      • ‘The boy had considered his options for days, and the voices had guided him well.’
      • ‘He complained of painful restlessness and hearing voices.’
      • ‘He strode on regardless, the voices guiding him.’
      • ‘We were startled to hear a brook trickling far back in a tiny crevice a hundred feet up the cliff - the manitous, the spirit voices, the Ojibwa would say.’
      • ‘Now, there's many ways to talk to your spirit guides, and some people already do it naturally, either in their heads, hearing voices, or writing things down.’
      • ‘By age 12, Willoughby was hearing voices in his head.’
      • ‘He does that while appearing cynical, often distancing himself from the utterances of those voices.’
      • ‘Then about five years later a variety of weird things happened which meant I had to make a choice about whether I was sensitive to that kind of thing, or just hearing voices in my head.’
      • ‘Sometimes spirit voices seem to emanate from the trumpet.’
      • ‘From the voices to visions, spirits, guides and demons, they all are different yet the same.’
      • ‘Ganchi, she said, had a history of psychiatric problems going back to 1978 when he complained of hearing voices and became a patient at the Royal Bolton Hospital.’
      • ‘Slowly I started hearing voices; I could not relate to people, I was suspicious about others and doubted their motives towards me.’
      • ‘She is sure that the voices are spirits, proving there is life after death.’
      • ‘There was an art installation at the Tate in Liverpool once based on the idea that you could record the voices of spirits which float around in empty rooms.’
      • ‘With regard to Counts 3, 5 and 6, the accused indicated that he had acted out as a result of hearing voices or spirits.’
      • ‘The sound produced is supposed to be the voices of the ancestral spirits.’
      • ‘She became aggressive and paranoid and was regularly admitted to mental hospitals, believing she was being persecuted and complaining of hearing voices.’
      • ‘The brothers then went on tour, filling theatres with ghostly music, flying coats and spirit voices.’
    3. 1.3 The distinctive tone or style of a literary work or author.
      ‘she had strained and falsified her literary voice’
      • ‘A literary tour through the state evokes the voices of Percy, Welty, Williams, and more’
      • ‘A decade in the making, this is the first in a four-volume series intended to document the oral and literary voices of African women.’
      • ‘Simon has begun to develop a distinctive voice as both a fiction and nonfiction writer.’
      • ‘His distinctive voice and presentation style was instantly recognisable.’
      • ‘We want distinctive literary voices, not ones that can be interchanged at will.’
      • ‘The characters of Millie and Jamie narrate their sections in their own styles, and their two voices are very distinctive.’
      • ‘At times the device is confusing, not least because the various voices are not sufficiently distinguished on the page, making it hard to see who says what.’
      • ‘This is both a strength, a welcome addition to the diversity of literary voices, and an inherent problem.’
      • ‘Writers like Labé and Whitney were able to take advantage of the relatively new medium of print to establish their distinctive literary voices.’
      • ‘And it is always a pleasure to listen to her beguiling and distinctive literary voice.’
      • ‘Still, although Pi certainly has a voice, the literary cost of his boyish naivety is that he is somewhat empty as a character.’
      • ‘With Twain, America gained a recognisable literary voice and form, just as it started on its path to superpower status.’
      • ‘Wilson has a distinctive voice, and his delight in language communicates itself readily to his readers.’
      • ‘In the process of this literary excavation, valuable remains of silenced voices are unearthed and retrieved.’
      • ‘Writers like Giovanni are inspired by Franklin's signature voice and strive to project their own distinctive voices in their work.’
      • ‘I attach, with a few comments about their varying contexts, authors' own voices, and values, a list of the most scholarly books.’
      • ‘Under the author's objective gaze, even the voice of the narrator becomes an image.’
      • ‘The storyline, voices, and overall style are completely different.’
      • ‘Are there other so-called aboriginal cultural groups in Australia and similar voices like that of yours that use literary writing as the medium for the purpose?’
      • ‘Like literary writers, they often did so by incorporating the voices of accepted authorities, particularly those of religious texts.’
  • 2A particular opinion or attitude expressed.

    ‘a dissenting voice’
    • ‘I heard very few dissenting voices and saw scant evidence of a balanced view.’
    • ‘It is important to hear the public's voices in this conversation.’
    • ‘Regarding the impeachment case, Park should listen to the public opinion and voices from GNP members in rebellion.’
    • ‘People feel pretty disenfranchised from the world around them - mostly their voices - their opinions - don't really matter in the slightest.’
    • ‘But they have no vote, and they have little way of making their voices heard in policy-making.’
    • ‘On this occasion, dissenting voices were heard, elaborating reasoned arguments.’
    • ‘This includes an awareness of the value of dissenting voices and even heretical opinions in the Christian past.’
    • ‘I wish the public and organisations of good intention would make their voices heard.’
    • ‘We are saying to these older people: make your voice heard, your votes are crucial.'’
    • ‘Strange voices and opinions can occasionally be heard on North Yorkshire's airwaves during any late-night phone-in.’
    • ‘Making your voice heard by voting in a referendum is of minor value.’
    • ‘People want to vote with their feet and let their voice be heard, but when it comes to all things European, they are not concerned.’
    • ‘We anticipated that there would be Americans here that would want their opinions and their voices heard.’
    • ‘Children do not have votes, and their voices are not often heard in our politics, but our Labour values demand that we invest not in some of the potential of some of our children but in all the potential of all of our children.’
    • ‘I mean, there are so many viewers who are so excited to be voting and to have their voice heard.’
    • ‘We have all made our voices heard at a public meeting with the Primary Care Trust.’
    • ‘While Dharma has laid himself open to criticism of misinterpretation, he has not heard dissenting voices so far.’
    • ‘The blog sites added to the media mix with new voices, comments, opinions and contexts.’
    • ‘The children are old enough that the court must hear their voices and wishes.’
    • ‘Don't rely on others to make their voices heard when commenting to the City of York Council.’
    opinion, view, comment, feeling, wish, desire, vote, input
    View synonyms
    1. 2.1 An agency by which a point of view is expressed or represented.
      ‘once the proud voice of middle-class conservatism, the paper had fallen on hard times’
      • ‘It is the role of the information and interaction designer to represent voices that are absent and to negotiate shared understandings despite differences.’
      • ‘In this era, we need to represent different voices as well as maintain a gentlemanly tone.’
      • ‘The middle class and working families are not going to have a voice to represent them.’
      • ‘Europeans have taken the lead (and their voices are represented in the comments in this issue).’
      • ‘It is not enough for democracies to let the majority reign supreme - the perils of not representing minority voices goes to the heart of its sustainability.’
      • ‘Set up in 2000 to give a strong voice to consumers, the agency was representing their views and giving them advice and information.’
      • ‘Acehnese NGOs represent many voices of civil society at the grassroots level.’
      • ‘They must exist to represent the combined voice and rights of workers.’
      • ‘The Institute is also working hard to represent the voice of BC members on the national scene.’
      • ‘Whatever the Telegraph may tell its readers, such voices represent what large parts of the world think.’
      • ‘Since the voices represent a number of government and non-governmental agencies, the public is often confused with inconsistent messages.’
      • ‘Issues of power can obscure the voices representing children's best interests.’
      • ‘What I mean is that, despite the explicit claim to represent many voices, I don't see much difference on this site.’
      • ‘Once again, government voices were given prominence over the more sceptical view.’
      • ‘This represents and provides a voice for community and voluntary groups in Laois.’
      • ‘How well are the voices of all generations represented in the congregation's leadership groups?’
      • ‘Has our government become blind to the wishes of our people and ultimately do they represent the voice of our island?’
      • ‘What we don't have is a vote because our voice as members is represented by our Chapter delegates.’
      • ‘However many staff expressed the view that it was important for the paper to have representative voices from ethnic communities.’
      • ‘The question is whether white film-makers can represent Indigenous voices.’
      mouthpiece, forum, organ, agency, agent, representative, spokesperson, spokesman, spokeswoman, frontman, intermediary, medium, vehicle, instrument, channel, means of expression
      View synonyms
    2. 2.2in singular The right to express an opinion.
      ‘the new electoral system gives minority parties a voice’
      • ‘I'm happy to be a voice in the minority, and to say I enjoyed it all the way through.’
      • ‘All the husbands started ganging up then and demanding the right to a voice in my column.’
      • ‘That is why Jim Wallace is trying to find a new voice on civil liberties, with freedom of information legislation and penal reform.’
      • ‘It acknowledges the right of the prostitute to a voice, the same right that the rest of us have.’
      • ‘It is time the rest of society reclaimed its right to have a voice in determining what their lives shall be like.’
      • ‘In fact, the extreme right wing had a voice in the proceedings out of proportion to their size.’
      • ‘Extremists from the Right can only breed if the mainstream do not have a voice from the traditional parties.’
      • ‘Is it a question of the minoritarian finding a voice or the majoritarian shutting up and listening?’
      • ‘Steve has just joined the Scottish Socialist Party and is a real voice of the people.’
      • ‘Socialists who stressed the struggle of the poor, like the poet Attila József, were a minority voice.’
      • ‘Even though you may think that you are but one small person, you still have a voice and the freedom to use it as you see fit.’
      • ‘The wave of forced migrants brings people for whom rights and a voice for the pariah are essential to their survival.’
      • ‘She said a voice on City of York Council that is free of party political influence is healthy for local democracy.’
      • ‘Where was the country's main opposition party when the elderly people of Ireland needed a voice?’
      • ‘The need for expression and the right to an individual voice link these two plays, each rooted in Greek mythology.’
      • ‘The aim of the group is to work together towards the elimination of discrimination on the grounds of race by giving ethnic minorities a voice.’
      • ‘Welcome to the movement sister, we sure could use a voice like yours right now!’
      • ‘At a time when the future of our public services is at the centre of the political debate, we must make clear that our members too have a right to a voice.’
      • ‘But they did not see an alternative beyond staying inside Labour and hoping to be allowed a voice in the party.’
      • ‘As an owner, the company will have much more of a voice in the operations of both the team and the series.’
  • 3Music
    The range of pitch or type of tone with which a person sings, such as soprano or tenor.

    • ‘The group of unaccompanied voices comprises bass, baritone, tenor, mezzo-soprano and soprano.’
    • ‘The medieval church knew no choral polyphony, only the ensemble of three or four soloists, drawn from alto, tenor, and baritone voices.’
    • ‘It contrasts with the soprano voice, which has overtones of someone more out-going than Mary.’
    • ‘At times, it makes sense to play the soprano and alto voices with the right hand, the tenor and bass with the left hand.’
    • ‘She didn't know why most girls liked baritone voices; tenor voices were so much more lyrical.’
    range, area, region, reaches, sweep
    View synonyms
    1. 3.1 A vocal part in a composition.
      • ‘Listening and experience are indispensable in honing the exceptionally advanced voicing skills chamber music and accompanying require.’
      • ‘Pärt has written many a cappella works for several voices or chorus, and this new one, apart from its concision, is typical.’
      • ‘The editorial markings by Alton Chan are helpful with excellent fingering, phrasing and voicing suggestions.’
      • ‘They were customarily for solo voice with continuo, but pieces for up to five voices were also composed and obbligato parts sometimes included.’
      • ‘Breth suggests such things as a week's score of metronome practice, practicing in rhythms, chord voicing, jumps, counting and trill drills, and relaxation.’
    2. 3.2 A constituent part in a fugue.
      • ‘These seem to be simultaneous streams of attention, like two or three interacting contrapuntal voices in a Bach fugue.’
      • ‘Bach's Art of Fugue sounds crystal clear, with voices separated in a way that couldn't be achieved by a human performer without computer help.’
    3. 3.3 Each of the notes or sounds able to be produced simultaneously by a musical instrument (especially an electronic one) or a computer.
      • ‘The stored musical sounds and voices are then reproduced in accordance with the received pitch and timing information.’
      • ‘I can combine tools, images, and multiple voices to create three-dimensional computer worlds.’
    4. 3.4 (in an electronic musical instrument) each of a number of preset or programmable tones.
      • ‘The voices of other programs are digitized and even the environment has its own unique sounds.’
  • 4Phonetics
    mass noun Sound uttered with resonance of the vocal cords (used in the pronunciation of vowels and certain consonants).

    • ‘Expiration of air through vibrating vocal cords, used in the production of vowels and voiced consonants.’
    • ‘More generally, voiceless obstruents are more frequent in onset position than voiced obstruents.’
    • ‘The two characters are quite similar, and apparently both denote voiced back consonants.’
  • 5Grammar
    A form or set of forms of a verb showing the relation of the subject to the action.

    ‘the passive voice’
    • ‘George Orwell argues that the passive voice can be a tool for political abuse.’
    • ‘In addition, most passive constructions do not exist in Chinese, because verbs often have identical passive and active voices.’
    • ‘I used voices in the first person, second person, and third person.’
    • ‘Never use the passive voice in an incitement to action, however vile or reprehensible.’
    • ‘The passive voice is formed within the same paradigm, by be followed by the past participle, but is not a tense.’

verb

[with object]
  • 1Express (something) in words.

    ‘get teachers to voice their opinions on important subjects’
    • ‘I opened my mouth to say something more but the words could not be voiced as I was silenced by the scene in front of me.’
    • ‘A stocky man who was seated near the head of the table was voicing his sarcastic opinion.’
    • ‘Kerry voiced his words very confidently and held a firm look on his face.’
    • ‘All I've seen, so far, in the ‘world’ of blogs, is words, lots of words; many worded comments and certainly people who do not shy away from voicing their opinions.’
    • ‘This means that when they do find a community where they are comfortable voicing their opinions, they often do so with a lot of energy and pride.’
    • ‘After all everyone was, or should have been, pulling together and voicing their opinion for the good of the team, so it would be particularly distasteful, if not unethical, should James profit from selling these stories.’
    • ‘Support your art community by voicing your opinion, and prove the visual arts are active and united in Calgary.’
    • ‘In other words, I must become a string theorist to voice an opinion about it.’
    • ‘Adam, in turn, mulled over his father's words before he voiced the many questions whirling through his head.’
    • ‘However, now that the matter is before the courts, Mr O'Keeffe stressed that he did not want to interfere with the judicial process and was just voicing a personal opinion.’
    • ‘Teachers, above all, should know that demonstrations and voicing one's opinion are the backbone and hard won right of any democracy.’
    • ‘The community was never given any opportunity to voice their opinion on this decision.’
    • ‘I am all for standing up for what you believe, which should include voicing your opinions against wars and against presidents, if that is your calling.’
    • ‘A large number of people were reluctant to talk about the elections with the Weekly at all, afraid they would get ‘in trouble’ for voicing their true opinions.’
    • ‘You can support your art community by attending these events and voicing your opinion.’
    • ‘At the end of the concert, patrons expressed immense satisfaction of the production, with most voicing the opinion that this gospel show should be held more regularly.’
    • ‘Also, the author is specifically defining what kind of dissent is appropriate, as if he has a right to determine the proper way of voicing your opinion.’
    • ‘Last week Charlie's opponent was Barroso himself who took the Irishman to task for voicing his opinion that the Commission wants to do away with Ireland's privileged corporation tax system.’
    • ‘We strongly encourage the Macalester community to voice their opinions on this issue.’
    • ‘We have become unafraid of voicing our opinions, using our power, pooling our resources, and allowing our differences to aid us instead of keeping us apart.’
    express, give expression to, vocalize, give voice to, 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
    View synonyms
  • 2usually as adjective voicedPhonetics
    Utter (a speech sound) with resonance of the vocal cords (e.g. b, d, g, v, z).

    • ‘Words are often pronounced without voicing the H. For example, in the word, everything.’
    • ‘Since each language has its own way of voicing the consonants and the vowels, names of places as pronounced by locals in their native language seldom sound the same to an outsider.’
  • 3Music
    Regulate the tone quality of (organ pipes or a piano).

    • ‘My sense of harmony, abrupt juxtapositions of texture, polyphonic approaches to rhythm, and voicing, probably have a lot to do with this relatively early fascination.’
    • ‘Skills such as shaping of line, pedaling, wrist rotation, voicing and chord playing can be easily incorporated into the piano lesson.’
    • ‘The student will enjoy exploring the many colors of piano dynamics, voicing and pedaling.’
    • ‘We have analyzed the music and made our decisions about tempo and rubato, phrasing and articulation, voicing and dynamics.’
    • ‘By indicating a different dynamic for each staff, and by writing un peu en dehors above the middle staff, he left little doubt about the intended voicing hierarchy.’

Phrases

  • give voice to

    • Allow (a particular emotion or opinion) to be expressed.

      ‘he allowed the crowd to give voice to their frustrations’
      • ‘The idea seems to be that if one doesn't actually give voice to opinions then it's perfectly possible for listeners or viewers to believe that one might not have them at all.’
      • ‘I thought of myself as being a means to give voice to the Native community.’
      • ‘The valuable role of civil society in giving voice to communities that governments cannot reach is also recognized, but its relationship with government and business is often characterized more by conflict than cooperation.’
      • ‘The campaign to amplify parent voices must focus on giving voice to each individual parent, not on enhancing the role of an allegedly representative group.’
      • ‘Woods turns away from the camera in the attempt to hide his annoyance, Sutton's head low to his chest, DiMarco trying unsuccessfully to find a way of giving voice to the huge American crowd.’
      • ‘It helps us to express ourselves - give voice to what we feel, think, see, believe, hope and desire.’
      • ‘The assumption of many contemporaries and later historians has been that Aitken and other Chartist leaders gave voice to and expressed the will of ‘the people’ on these occasions.’
      • ‘Should we start to close down the internet, that great forum of free expression which is continually giving voice to the sad, the lonely and the downright insane?’
      • ‘They give voice to a lot of voices that don't otherwise get heard.’
      • ‘It's about making connections, having an awareness of one's heritage, and giving voice to different communities and their struggles against authority.’
      expression, utterance, verbalization, vocalization, airing
      express, give expression to, vocalize, give voice to, 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
      View synonyms
  • in voice

    • In proper vocal condition for singing or speaking.

      ‘the soprano is in marvellous voice’
      • ‘In striking contrast to the earlier stanzas, stanzas fifteen and sixteen are consistent neither in tone nor in voice.’
      • ‘I always felt that Richard Harris was miscast as Albus Dumbledore and although Michael Gambon is an improvement in voice and performance, I don't think he's quite got it, either.’
      • ‘Robin Leggate's Captain Vere was all he needed to be, torn and sturdy, betraying - more in tone than in voice - a certain frailty.’
      • ‘Ab-Liva and Sandman are the stylistic opposite of Clipse, burly in voice and muddy in inflection, intensifying most tracks, but usually just acting as foils.’
      • ‘And it is this difference in voice and her style of singing that Sapna feels is her main assets.’
  • with one voice

    • In complete agreement; unanimously.

      ‘Conservatives must speak with one voice to get their message across’
      • ‘While the industry insists it must stick together and speak with one voice, there have been individual voices of disapproval.’
      • ‘Instead, society should speak with one voice: every job is a good job, because doing it well will start you up the employment ladder.’
      • ‘The award was also welcomed by Scarborough Forum for Tourism, set up three years ago to allow all sectors of the industry, including residents groups, to speak with one voice.’
      • ‘But just as surely, it must be noted that they were closer to speaking with one voice than at any other time in our history.’
      • ‘‘We've lost ground in trying to find a diplomatic solution because the world has not spoken with one voice,’ she said.’
      • ‘But such strictures pertain only to traditional indigenes and minorities; these are deemed to speak with one voice, while others do not.’
      • ‘A party that speaks with one voice: the Prime Minister's.’
      • ‘But how does a movement that does not speak with one voice and that often marches energetically in different directions take the next step?’
      • ‘So you want to be a united front and speak with one voice and give clear directives to the contractor even as a couple.’
      • ‘We must speak with one voice, and proudly promote the positive impact of the industry's substantial investment in server training.’
      united, in complete agreement, in complete accord, of one mind, like-minded, of the same mind, in harmony, at one, with one voice, concordant, undivided
      View synonyms

Origin

Middle English: from Old French vois, from Latin vox, voc-.

Pronunciation

voice

/vɔɪs/