Origin and Etymology of ventriloquist
Late Latin ventriloquus “person who appears to produce speech sounds from within his or her body (as during spirit possession or under control of a deity)” (from Latin ventr-, venter “belly, abdomen” + -i- -i- + -loquus, agent derivative of loquī “to speak”) + 1-ist — more at venter, loquacious ◆The Late Latin word was coined as a translation of Greek engastrímythos.
First Known Use: circa 1656
VENTRILOQUIST Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of ventriloquist for English Language Learners
: a performer who is able to speak in a way that makes it appear that the words are being said by a large doll (called a dummy)
VENTRILOQUIST Defined for Kids
Definition of ventriloquist for Students
: a person skilled in speaking in such a way that the voice seems to come from a source other than the speaker
Word Root of ventriloquist
The Latin word loquī, meaning “to talk” or “to speak,” and its form locūtus give us the roots locu and loqu. Words from the Latin loquī have something to do with talking. An eloquent speaker speaks clearly and well. Elocution is the art of speaking or reading well in public. A ventriloquist is a person who speaks so that the voice seems to come from elsewhere.
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