ven·​tril·​o·​quism ven-ˈtri-lə-ˌkwi-zəm How to pronounce ventriloquism (audio)
: the production of the voice in such a way that the sound seems to come from a source other than the vocal organs of the speaker
: the expression of one's views and attitudes through another
especially : such expression by a writer through a fictional character or literary persona
ventriloquial adjective
ventriloquially adverb

Examples of ventriloquism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But Glück’s ventriloquism has a purpose beyond character-building or avant-garde experimentation. Daniel Felsenthal, The New Yorker, 19 Jan. 2024 But every celebrity memoir is an act of ventriloquism: The book was ghostwritten, and its audiobook was read by the actress Michelle Williams. Amanda Hess, New York Times, 30 Oct. 2023 Finding, finally, the answer in this ventriloquism: unexpected, risky; reaching for and grasping that balloon. Lynn Steger Strong, The New Republic, 15 Sep. 2023 Jimmy Vee, ventriloquism advocate and assistant director for the convention, has witnessed the enthusiasm. Nancy Berk, Forbes, 3 May 2023 My rehearsals with my act and overall ventriloquism technique has improved so much since then. Nancy Berk, Forbes, 3 May 2023 Minus Banville’s own knack for literary ventriloquism, however, this all too evidently European co-production can’t help but feel multiple degrees removed from the real thing, not helped by the shuffling, ungainly presence of a wildly miscast Liam Neeson in shoes once filled by Bogart and Mitchum. Guy Lodge, Variety, 24 Sep. 2022 That’s a lot of ventriloquism. Nancy Berk, Forbes, 12 Aug. 2022 This isn’t expert emo teenager ventriloquism. Stefan Beck, Washington Examiner, 18 Mar. 2021 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ventriloquism.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


ventriloqu(ist) + -ism

First Known Use

1775, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of ventriloquism was in 1775

Dictionary Entries Near ventriloquism

Cite this Entry

“Ventriloquism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Mar. 2024.

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