noun (1)
\ ˈfōn How to pronounce phone (audio) \

Definition of phone

 (Entry 1 of 5)


phoned; phoning

Definition of phone (Entry 2 of 5)


noun (2)

Definition of phone (Entry 3 of 5)

: a speech sound considered as a physical event without regard to its place in the sound system of a language

Definition of -phone (Entry 4 of 5)

1 : sound homophone often in names of musical instruments and sound-transmitting devices radiophonexylophone
2 : speaker of (a specified language) Francophone

Definition of -phone (Entry 5 of 5)

: of or relating to a population that speaks (a specified language) Francophone

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for phone

Synonyms: Verb

call, dial, ring (up) [chiefly British], telephone

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of phone in a Sentence


Someone from the newspaper will be phoning with a few questions. she phoned her friend to invite her over for dinner

First Known Use of phone

Noun (1)

1880, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1885, in the meaning defined above

Noun (2)

circa 1866, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for phone

Noun (1)

by shortening

Noun (2)

Greek phōnē

Noun combining form

Greek -phōnos sounding, from phōnē

Adjective combining form

French, from Greek -phōnos

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about phone

Statistics for phone

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for phone

The first known use of phone was circa 1866

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for phone



English Language Learners Definition of phone

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to speak or try to speak to (someone) over a telephone system

English Language Learners Definition of -phone (Entry 2 of 2)

: sound
: a speaker of a specified language


\ ˈfōn How to pronounce phone (audio) \

Kids Definition of phone

 (Entry 1 of 2)


phoned; phoning

Kids Definition of phone (Entry 2 of 2)

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on phone

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with phone

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for phone

Spanish Central: Translation of phone

Nglish: Translation of phone for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of phone for Arabic Speakers

Comments on phone

What made you want to look up phone? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


a device or gadget

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!