vocal cords

plural noun

Definition of vocal cords

: either of two pairs of folds of mucous membranes that project into the cavity of the larynx and have free edges extending dorsoventrally toward the middle line

Examples of vocal cords in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Large dermoid cysts found in the neck, for instance, could put pressure on nearby structures in the throat, like the vocal cords or trachea, causing voice changes or trouble breathing or swallowing, according to Dr. Georgopoulos. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "Did You Know Dermoid Cysts Can Have Hair, Skin, and TEETH?," 15 Jan. 2019 For the first 30 seconds of the track, Jessie J holds the tempo back, letting her vocal cords do all the work over a few piano keys. Natalie Maher, Harper's BAZAAR, "The Best New Christmas Songs of 2018," 12 Nov. 2018 These symptoms happen due to swelling that occurs around the larynx (the vocal cords), trachea (windpipe), and bronchi (bronchial tubes). Korin Miller, SELF, "HGTV's Tarek and Christina El Moussa's Son Was Hospitalized for Croup," 16 Oct. 2018 Sure, your body is a total machine, but give yourself a chance to work other muscles once in a while — like your vocal cords, for instance. Danielle Fox, Seventeen, "Which High School Musical Character Are You?," 24 July 2018 Coaches operate on a granular level that exists entirely between the first ticks of the game clock and the final vibrations of the fat lady’s vocal cords. David Murphy, Philly.com, "How LeBron James' decision may change Sixers' Star Hunt approach | David Murphy," 2 July 2018 Yes, Oprah Winfrey’s vocal cords are that powerful. Ariana Romero, refinery29.com, "The Handmaid's Tale Needed Oprah As Much As We Do," 27 June 2018 Stewart had groomed them, from sounding like angelic boys to confident young men, one vocal cord at a time. Courtland Milloy, Washington Post, "A love of music led one woman to a lifetime of teaching, and a lifeline for some boys at risk," 26 June 2018 The Championship Tour, which on past stops has featured fellow TDE artist SZA (the singer unfortunately missed Camden due to a vocal cord issue), is cleverly athletic-themed. Drew Lazor, Philly.com, "Kendrick Lamar looms large at his show at BB&T Pavilion," 9 June 2018

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

1852, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

26 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for vocal cords

The first known use of vocal cords was in 1852

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More Definitions for vocal cords

vocal cords


English Language Learners Definition of vocal cords

: the thin pieces of folded tissue in your throat that help you to make sounds with your voice

vocal cords

noun plural

Kids Definition of vocal cords

: a pair of folds of tissue that extend across the inside of the larynx and that produce the voice when air exhaled from the lungs causes them to tighten and vibrate

More from Merriam-Webster on vocal cords

Spanish Central: Translation of vocal cords

Nglish: Translation of vocal cords for Spanish Speakers

Comments on vocal cords

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to deny responsibility for

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