ex·​pres·​siv·​i·​ty | \ ˌek-ˌspre-ˈsi-və-tē How to pronounce expressivity (audio) \
plural expressivities

Definition of expressivity

1 : the relative capacity of a gene to affect the phenotype of the organism of which it is a part
2 : the quality of being expressive

Examples of expressivity in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The film’s performances, by some of the best actors in the business, have a generic and atemporal expressivity that suggests neither the society of the nineteen-forties nor the movies of that time. Richard Brody, The New Yorker, 17 Dec. 2021 With his lucid, quicksilver expressivity and a hulking, powerfully threatening physicality, Gandolfini made flesh Tony’s internal struggle, filling a potential cartoon with soul and, by extension, giving greater depth to the show. New York Times, 29 Sep. 2021 Henry’s character, Phastos, is the most vivid, partly because his superhero has an identifiably real side, but primarily because of the actor’s unforced sense of empathy and delicate expressivity. New York Times, 4 Nov. 2021 Cho made a perfect foil for Dudamel’s extravagant expressivity. Los Angeles Times, 10 Oct. 2021 The music’s tone, too, has a ferocious expressivity that’s on display from the very start of the concert. Richard Brod, The New Yorker, 26 July 2021 The orchestra’s reading of this piece again called for more expressivity and lyricism. Tim Diovanni, Dallas News, 13 June 2021 But on Thursday, principal guest conductor Gemma New coaxed playing of amazing precision, tonal finesse and generous expressivity. Scott Cantrell, Dallas News, 14 May 2021 Speaking between takes at the shoot in Brooklyn, Primeaux-O’Bryant said that some music videos created by hearing A.S.L. speakers lack expressivity and render little more than the words and basic rhythm. New York Times, 9 Apr. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of expressivity

1934, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for expressivity

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The first known use of expressivity was in 1934

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Cite this Entry

“Expressivity.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for expressivity


ex·​pres·​siv·​i·​ty | \ ˌek-ˌspres-ˈiv-ət-ē How to pronounce expressivity (audio) \
plural expressivities

Medical Definition of expressivity

: the relative capacity of a gene to affect the phenotype of the organism of which it is a part — compare penetrance


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