voice
Pronunciation Noun

voice (plural voices)

  1. Sound uttered by the mouth, especially by human beings in speech or song; sound thus uttered considered as possessing some special quality or character
    The human voice is the oldest musical instrument in history.
    She has a pleasant voice.
    His low voice allowed him to become a bass in the choir.
    • c. 1603–1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of King Lear”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene iii], page 309 ↗, column 1:
      Her voice was euer ſoft,
      Gentle, and low, an excellent thing in woman.
    • 1629, John Milton, “On the Morning of Christ's Nativity”, in Poems of Mr. John Milton, […] , London: Printed by Ruth Raworth for Humphrey Moſely,  […], published 1645, OCLC 606951673 ↗, page 2 ↗:
      And joyn thy voice unto the Angel Quire,
  2. (phonetics) Sound made through vibration of the vocal cords; sonant, or intonated, utterance; tone; — distinguished from mere breath sound as heard in whispering and voiceless consonants.
  3. The tone or sound emitted by an object
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, 1 Kings 19:12 ↗:
      And after the earthquake, a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire, a still small voice.
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, Job 40:9 ↗:
      Canst thou thunder with a voice like him?
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, Psalms 93:3 ↗:
      The floods have lifted up their voice.
    • 1712, Joseph Addison, Cato, a Tragedy
      O Marcus, I am warm’d; my heart Leaps at the trumpet’s voice.
  4. The faculty or power of utterance
    to cultivate the voice
  5. That which is communicated; message; meaning.
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, Galatians 4:20 ↗:
      I desire to bee present with you now, and to change my voyce, for I stand in doubt of you.
    • c. 1606, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedie of Macbeth”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act V, scene vii]:
      My voice is in my sword.
    • 17th century, John Fell (bishop), unknown work
      Let us call on God in the voice of his church.
  6. An expressed opinion, choice, will, desire, or wish; the right or ability to make such expression or to have it considered
    • c. 1608–1609, William Shakespeare, “The Tragedy of Coriolanus”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358 ↗, [Act II, scene iii]:
      Sicinius. How now, my masters! have you chose this man? / 1st Citizen. He has our voices, sir.
    • 1697, John Dryden, Aeneid
      Some laws ordain, and some attend the choice / Of holy senates, and elect by voice.
      Like many of the 7 million other first time voters, she came of age during half a decade of military rule that has governed the country since former general turned Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha seized power in a 2014 coup. "We have had our voice taken away for five years," she says.
  7. (archaic) Command; precept.
    • 1611, The Holy Bible, […] (King James Version), imprinted at London: By Robert Barker, […], OCLC 964384981 ↗, Deuteronomy 8:20 ↗:
      As the nations which the Lord destroyeth before your face, so shall yee perish; because ye would not be obedient vnto the voice of the Lord your God.
  8. One who speaks; a speaker.
    • 1849, Alfred Tennyson, In Memoriam A.H.H.
      A potent voice of Parliament.
  9. (literature) A particular style or way of writing that expresses a certain tone or feeling.
  10. (grammar) A particular way of inflecting or conjugating verbs, or a particular form of a verb, by means of which is indicated the relation of the subject of the verb to the action which the verb expresses.
    The verbal system of Latin has two voices, active and passive.
  11. (music) In harmony, an independent vocal or instrumental part in a piece of composition.
    The theme of this piece constantly migrates between the three voice parts.
  12. (Internet, IRC) A flag associated with a user on a channel, determining whether or not they can send messages to the channel.
Synonyms Verb

voice (voices, present participle voicing; past and past participle voiced)

  1. (transitive) To give utterance or expression to; to utter; to publish; to announce
    He voiced the sentiments of the nation.
    • 1893, Annie Wood Besant, An Autobiography
      How often he would voice his love of England, his admiration of her Parliament, his pride in her history.
    • 1612, Francis Bacon, Of Great Place
      Rather assume thy right in silence and . . . then voice it with claims and challenges.
    • 1622, Francis Bacon, History of the Reign of King Henry VII
      It was voiced that the king purposed to put to death Edward Plantagenet.
  2. (transitive, phonology) To utter audibly, with tone and not just breath.
  3. (transitive) To fit for producing the proper sounds; to regulate the tone of
    voice the pipes of an organ
  4. (transitive, obsolete) To vote; to elect; to appoint
  5. (intransitive, obsolete) To clamor; to cry out
  6. (transitive, Internet, IRC) To assign the voice flag to a user on IRC, permitting them to send messages to the channel.
  7. (television, film) To act as a voice actor to portray a character.
Related terms


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