el·​o·​quence | \ˈe-lə-kwən(t)s \

Definition of eloquence 

1 : discourse marked by force and persuasiveness also : the art or power of using such discourse

2 : the quality of forceful or persuasive expressiveness

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Synonyms & Antonyms for eloquence


articulacy [chiefly British], articulateness, poetry, rhetoric



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Examples of eloquence in a Sentence

The senator's eloquence is well known. She spoke with eloquence on the need for better schools.

Recent Examples on the Web

The defining characteristic of Federer these days is not his effortless eloquence, but his efficiency. Sam Farmer, latimes.com, "Roger Federer continues to set opponents straight at Wimbledon, reaches quarterfinals," 9 July 2018 As anyone who tuned into the episode noticed, many young Armenians value the eloquence and sentimentality of traditional toasting but take the old-fashioned, patriarchal stuff with a grain of salt. Benjamin Kemper, Smithsonian, "Raising a Glass to Armenia’s Elaborate Toasting Tradition," 13 July 2018 But as Lincoln knew well, eloquence is not necessarily the same as efficacy. Sean Wilentz, New York Times, "A Battle for the ‘Soul of America’? It’s as Old as America, One Historian Notes," 21 May 2018 Faust was quiet eloquence personified in the largo movement of the Sonata No. 3 in C (BWV 1005). John Von Rhein, chicagotribune.com, "Violinist Faust, in a brilliant CSO debut, makes convincing case for flawed Schumann rarity," 12 May 2018 Stevenson, who is the founder and Executive Director of the Equal Justice Initiative in Montgomery, Alabama, spoke with extraordinary power and eloquence about what each of us can do to make the world a more just place. Clifton Leaf, Fortune, "Brainstorm Health: Cruel and Unusual, Amazon and PillPack, Biotech IPO Madness," 28 June 2018 Varied effects of vibrato, portamento and pizzicato bring different shades of intensity, atmosphere, eloquence: Even a single austere cello line down a few tones can become fraught with significance. New York Times, "Review: Pam Tanowitz’s ‘Four Quartets’ Hits Poetic Heights," 8 July 2018 Roman also found room for moving eloquence, especially in the elegiac Moderato with its melancholy theme, shared with LACO principal Michael Thornton's evocative French horn. Rick Schultz, latimes.com, "L.A. Chamber Orchestra musicians offer a fitting remembrance for one of their own," 22 May 2018 In advocating for an end to mass shootings, Hogg and his fellow classmates have shown more maturity, backbone, courage, intelligence , wisdom and eloquence than the adults smearing them and holding elected office. Jeff Darcy, cleveland.com, "Gold Medalist defies Trump stance on immigration: Darcy cartoon," 25 Feb. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'eloquence.' 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 eloquence

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for eloquence

Last Updated

28 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for eloquence

The first known use of eloquence was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of eloquence

: the ability to speak or write well and in an effective way


el·​o·​quence | \ˈe-lə-kwəns \

Kids Definition of eloquence

1 : speaking or writing that is forceful and convincing

2 : the ability to speak or write with force and in a convincing way

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Comments on eloquence

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a private place of worship

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