\ ˈtȯk How to pronounce talk (audio) \
talked; talking; talks

Definition of talk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to express or exchange ideas by means of spoken words
b : to convey information or communicate in any way (as with signs or sounds) can make a trumpet talk make the computer talk to the printer
2 : to use speech : speak
3a : to speak idly : prate
b : gossip
c : to reveal secret or confidential information
4 : to give a talk : lecture


1 : to deliver or express in speech : utter
2 : to make the subject of conversation or discourse : discuss talk business
3 : to influence, affect, or cause by talking talked them into going
4 : to use (a language) for conversing or communicating : speak
talk back
: to answer impertinently
talk sense
: to voice rational, logical, or sensible thoughts
talk through one's hat
: to voice irrational, illogical, or erroneous ideas
talk turkey
: to speak frankly or bluntly



Definition of talk (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of talking : speech
2 : a way of speaking : language
3 : pointless or fruitless discussion : verbiage
4 : a formal discussion, negotiation, or exchange of views often used in plural
6 : the topic of interested comment, conversation, or gossip it's the talk of the town
b : written analysis or discussion presented in an informal or conversational manner
8 : communicative sounds or signs resembling or functioning as talk bird talk

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Other Words from talk


talker noun

Examples of talk in a Sentence

Verb She never talks at the meetings. He did most of the talking during dinner. He loves to hear himself talk. I think she's talking a lot of nonsense. I can't talk right now. I'm running late. They were talking in Spanish. We talked on the phone until midnight. Both sides in the dispute are now willing to talk. They are in the conference room talking business. She had laryngitis and couldn't talk. Noun the noted author's talk on the state of the modern novel what good will all this talk do when we need to take action now?
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Now, Riser and Justman talk almost every day and go on runs together once a week. Adam Rogan, Star Tribune, "Riser set to become Caledonia's 1st Black female officer," 10 Aug. 2020 It’s always funny when someone on one screen is trying to talk to another. Emily Dreyfuss,, "Today’s technology suggests our videoconferenced future won’t be so bad," 9 Aug. 2020 Millage works as a mentor for juveniles, going into the Donald E. Long Juvenile Detention Center three times a week to talk to at-risk teenagers and try to steer them away from trouble through the local Community Healing Initiative. oregonlive, "Portland’s deadly July: Domestic violence, suspected love triangle and gang retaliation among 15 killings," 6 Aug. 2020 The higher gold prices go, the more analysts and investors talk about it, and the more financial media reports on it. Hannah Denham, Washington Post, "5 reasons gold prices are soaring," 5 Aug. 2020 The bourbon reviews talk about it like a ginger heat. Dahlia Ghabour, The Courier-Journal, "A bourbon with no alcohol? Spiritless, a female-led distillery, is launching in Louisville," 4 Aug. 2020 When people talk about male or female pattern hair loss — typically a receding hair line in men or thinning at the crown in women — that’s androgenetic alopecia. Kaitlyn Pirie, Good Housekeeping, "Everything You Need to Know About Hair Loss, According to Dermatologists," 3 Aug. 2020 Public-health experts talk wearily about the panic-neglect cycle, in which outbreaks trigger waves of attention and funding that quickly dissipate once the diseases recede. Ed Yong, The Atlantic, "How the Pandemic Defeated America," 3 Aug. 2020 People talk about ‘The Movement,’ but these three have gone into action. Dallas News, "How the Dallas Mavericks have become ‘a model’ in the fight against racial injustice and inequality," 30 July 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Hi Michelle, lot of talk going on about the gifting. The Washington Post, "Color of Money Live," 30 July 2020 While some of that is rhetoric of mutual respect, some of that talk is real. Jon Blau And Jeremy Price, The Indianapolis Star, "Big questions remain for Big Ten fall sports and the athletes who play them," 12 July 2020 As coronavirus cases spike around the country, there’s been a lot of talk about the role bars play in the spread of the disease. Cliff Pinckard, cleveland, "Cleveland City Council will consider penalties for mask mandate, and Cuyahoga County may do the same: The Wake Up for Monday, July 6, 2020," 6 July 2020 There's also increasing pressure on him to resign and some talk on the Metro Council about impeachment. Joseph Gerth, The Courier-Journal, "Strike One: Mayor Greg Fischer swings for one police chief and misses," 11 June 2020 Sherman, who was with the Seahawks when player protests were national stories in 2016 and 2017, said past locker-room conversations often included plenty of talk about anthem protests. Eric Branch,, "49ers’ Richard Sherman encouraged by recent discussions about racism," 9 June 2020 Racial inequity in country music persists, though that fact — and the genre’s history — is rarely acknowledged by people in the industry, even as the few contemporary country artists of color talk about their experiences. Emily Yahr, Washington Post, "How the country music industry responded to George Floyd’s death — and faced its own painful truths," 9 June 2020 Fauci is known for his straight talk that often veers from President Trump’s spin. Chronicle Staff,, "Coronavirus news from the Bay Area: July 4-5," 6 July 2020 The talk shows have not taken this new Covid-19 spike seriously enough. Brian Stelter, CNN, "Pro-Trump media outlets are in denial as many states report new surge in coronavirus cases," 28 June 2020

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for talk


Middle English; akin to Old English talu tale

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Time Traveler for talk

Time Traveler

The first known use of talk was in the 13th century

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Statistics for talk

Last Updated

13 Aug 2020

Cite this Entry

“Talk.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 Aug. 2020.

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More Definitions for talk


How to pronounce talk (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of talk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to say words in order to express your thoughts, feelings, opinions, etc., to someone
: to have a conversation or discussion with someone
: to have a conversation about (something)



English Language Learners Definition of talk (Entry 2 of 2)

: an occurrence in which one person talks about something with another person : a conversation or discussion
: the act of talking formally about something before a group of people : a speech or lecture
: a formal discussion between two or more groups that are trying to reach an agreement about something


\ ˈtȯk How to pronounce talk (audio) \
talked; talking

Kids Definition of talk

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to express in speech : speak You're talking too fast.
2 : to speak about : discuss They're talking business.
3 : to cause or influence with words I talked them into agreeing.
4 : to use a certain language They were talking Spanish.
5 : to exchange ideas by means of spoken words : converse Let's sit and talk.
6 : to pass on information other than by speaking Can you talk with your hands?
7 : gossip entry 2 If you act that way, people will talk.
8 : to reveal secret information Officials forced the spy to talk.
talk over
: discuss sense 2 We need to talk over our vacation plans.

Other Words from talk

talker noun



Kids Definition of talk (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of speaking with someone We had a talk.
2 : a way of speaking : language
4 : rumor entry 1 Has there been talk of war?
5 : the topic of comment or gossip The President's visit is the talk of the town.
6 : an informal address The coach gave us a talk to raise our spirits.

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More from Merriam-Webster on talk

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for talk

Spanish Central: Translation of talk

Nglish: Translation of talk for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of talk for Arabic Speakers

Comments on talk

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