accentuate

verb
ac·​cen·​tu·​ate | \ ik-ˈsen(t)-shə-ˌwāt How to pronounce accentuate (audio) , ak-\
accentuated; accentuating

Definition of accentuate

transitive verb

: to make (something) more prominent or noticeable : accent, emphasize With her hair in tight curls that accentuate her pale beauty, she seems lit from within.— Peter Travers trying to accentuate the positive aspects of the program also : intensify accentuates the feeling of despair

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Other Words from accentuate

accentuation \ ik-​ˌsen(t)-​shə-​ˈwā-​shən How to pronounce accentuation (audio) , (ˌ)ak-​ \ noun

Did You Know?

When you "accentuate" something, you put an "accent" (or emphasis) on it. So it will come as no surprise to learn that etymologists have traced "accentuate" back to "accentus," the Latin word for "accent." "Accentus," in turn, combines the prefix ad- with cantus, meaning "song." Other descendants of "accentus" in English include "accent" itself, as well as "accentual" ("of, relating to, or characterized by accent").

Examples of accentuate in a Sentence

He likes to wear clothes that accentuate his muscular build. let's accentuate the saxophones during this piece by having the sax players stand up

Recent Examples on the Web

To bring the disparate elements of your look together, choose a slightly oversize man's shirt, tuck it in, and top it with an eye-catching, wide belt that accentuates your shape. Town & Country, "How to Wear a Classic White Button-Down Shirt for Any Occasion," 3 Sep. 2019 At the same time, the rarity that accentuates marketability can also breed resentment from some male drivers, Force and Pritchett said. Tyler Kraft, Indianapolis Star, "Why women drivers are more prominent in NHRA than other racing circuits," 1 Sep. 2019 Once we were settled in white leather revolving chairs and offered tea and chocolates by a secretary, Lyovochkin strode in, wearing a deconstructed blazer that accentuated his athletic frame. Sam Patten, WIRED, "Kostya and Me: How Sam Patten Got Ensnared in Mueller’s Probe," 14 Aug. 2019 Korean makeup, too, evolved toward products that accentuated the skin’s natural sheen rather than covering it up. Sarah Todd, Quartzy, "Why getting dewy skin became a global obsession," 24 July 2019 Running a chopstick along the spine, the fish separated into clean halves for easy access to meat that accentuated the mackerel’s deep, oily flavor with citrus, salt and sour notes. Mike Sutter, ExpressNews.com, "Review: Kuriya @ Cherrity Bar delivers Japanese ramen with San Antonio charm," 3 July 2019 Along the line of Hooters, Twin Peaks is a national franchised chain whose female servers wear denim shorts and tied-off plaid tops that accentuate cleavage. Michael Mayo, sun-sentinel.com, "Whiskey Tango closes in Hollywood, Twin Peaks (with new balcony bar?) on the way," 3 July 2019 Her response: to play up her unusual body type by wearing tight dresses that accentuated her skinniness. Sharon Marcus, Vox, "The first modern celebrity was born 175 years ago," 26 June 2019 In the photo, Witherspoon, 43, accentuated her startled face with a Snapchat filter, complete with glasses, bunny ears and sparkly hair bows. Cydney Henderson, USA TODAY, "Reese Witherspoon reveals 'how to talk to your kids on Snapchat' and many moms can relate," 23 Aug. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'accentuate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of accentuate

circa 1719, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for accentuate

borrowed from Medieval Latin accentuātus, past participle of accentuāre "to accent, stress," derivative of Latin accentus accent entry 1

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Statistics for accentuate

Last Updated

15 Sep 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for accentuate

The first known use of accentuate was circa 1719

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More Definitions for accentuate

accentuate

verb
ac·​cen·​tu·​ate | \ ak-ˈsen-chə-ˌwāt How to pronounce accentuate (audio) \
accentuated; accentuating

Kids Definition of accentuate

: to make more noticeable Your blue shirt accentuates your eyes.

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