speech

noun
\ ˈspēch How to pronounce speech (audio) \

Definition of speech

1a : the communication or expression of thoughts in spoken words
b : exchange of spoken words : conversation
2a : something that is spoken : utterance
b : a usually public discourse : address
b : an individual manner or style of speaking
4 : the power of expressing or communicating thoughts by speaking

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Examples of speech in a Sentence

She has to make a speech at the convention. a graduation speech about embracing future challenges I was so flustered that I momentarily lost the power of speech. Slang is used mostly in informal speech. Many words are more common in speech than in writing.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Then the speech that comes after that is in the cloud. Eric Johnson, Recode, "What’s next for virtual assistants like Alexa? Maybe buying stuff for you automatically.," 24 Dec. 2018 While announcing their plans and discussing the new channel at Discovery Upfronts in New York City on Wednesday, Chip and Jo's speech went a little...long. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "Chip and Joanna Gaines Had a Hilarious Teleprompter Fail While Announcing Their New Network," 12 Apr. 2019 Actresses wore black on the red carpet and many men sported #TimesUp pins to signal solidarity, and the night was filled with speeches and statements. Vox, "Golden Globes 2019: winners, nominations, and biggest moments," 6 Dec. 2018 In a country founded on ideals of freedom of speech and religion, Americans are still violently targeted for their core values and beliefs. Zach Schermele, Teen Vogue, "Donald Trump's Ideology Is Supporting Political Violence," 30 Oct. 2018 In speeches and close to 350 meetings on the assembly sideline, the conflicts, hotspots and issues contributing to that turbulence will be debated. Fox News, "UN to caution against populism in high-level week," 25 Sep. 2018 After speeches and dinner, the party really got started, thanks to music by the 10-piece A-List band. Ryan Ray, Harper's BAZAAR, "This Bride Found Her Gown One Month Before Her Absolutely Stunning Vineyard Wedding," 2 Apr. 2019 Facebook has been under fire globally for failing to take sufficient action against hate speech and misinformation on its site. Patrick Thomas, WSJ, "Facebook to Block White Nationalism, Separatism Content on Site," 27 Mar. 2019 Rhimes gave a stirring keynote speech and other notable guests, like musician SZA and activist Jazz Jennings, were in attendance. Rosemary Donahue, Allure, "Why Shonda Rhimes Doesn't Believe in Imposter Syndrome," 16 Oct. 2018

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for speech

Middle English speche, from Old English sprǣc, spǣc; akin to Old English sprecan to speak — more at speak

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Statistics for speech

Last Updated

13 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for speech

The first known use of speech was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for speech

speech

noun

English Language Learners Definition of speech

: a spoken expression of ideas, opinions, etc., that is made by someone who is speaking in front of a group of people
: the ability to speak
: spoken language

speech

noun
\ ˈspēch How to pronounce speech (audio) \

Kids Definition of speech

1 : the communication or expression of thoughts in spoken words
2 : something that is spoken : statement Indeed, there had been so much talk that the steward … informed one and all that such speech went against the will of God …— Avi, Crispin
3 : a public talk
4 : a form of communication (as a language or dialect) used by a particular group
5 : a way of speaking And he was quick to grasp the … rhythms of Lewis's speech and match them.— Virginia Hamilton, M. C. Higgins
6 : the ability to speak I was so surprised, I lost my speech.

speech

noun
\ ˈspēch How to pronounce speech (audio) \

Medical Definition of speech

: the communication or expression of thoughts in spoken words

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speech

noun

Legal Definition of speech

: words or conduct used to communicate or express a thought : expression — see also commercial speech, freedom of speech, free speech, obscene, symbolic speech

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More from Merriam-Webster on speech

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with speech

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for speech

Spanish Central: Translation of speech

Nglish: Translation of speech for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of speech for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about speech

Comments on speech

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