vowel

noun
vow·​el | \ ˈvau̇(-ə)l How to pronounce vowel (audio) \

Definition of vowel

1 : one of a class of speech sounds in the articulation of which the oral part of the breath channel is not blocked and is not constricted enough to cause audible friction broadly : the one most prominent sound in a syllable
2 : a letter or other symbol representing a vowel usually used in English of a, e, i, o, u, and sometimes y

Examples of vowel in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Musgraves continues, her native Texas twang drawing out the vowels, aaal riiight. Eric Ray Davidson, Glamour, "Kacey Musgraves Isn’t Trying to Please Anybody but Herself," 28 Mar. 2019 If a sound segment consisted of just one vowel, the time after the beat was quite short. Catherine Matacic, Science | AAAS, "If you listen closely, the drumbeats of Amazonian tribes sound like human speech," 24 Apr. 2018 There are some sweet scorers now eligible for play, including bizjet, and some magical vowel dumps, such as arancini, those Italian balls of cooked rice. Leanne Italie, Fox News, "Scrabble dictionary adds 'OK,' 'ew' to official play along with hundreds of other new words," 24 Sep. 2018 There are some sweet scorers now eligible for play, including bizjet, and some magical vowel dumps, such as arancini, those Italian balls of cooked rice. Leanne Itali, The Seattle Times, "Yowza! Scrabble dictionary update adds ‘OK,’ ‘ew’ to official play," 24 Sep. 2018 Lunar surface communications were voice-activated and subject to interference, so a vowel could easily have been dropped. Jennifer Bogo, Popular Mechanics, "The Oral History of Apollo 11," 17 July 2018 The jury is out on whether dating apps like Happn and Grindr are bad for society or simply bad for the future of vowels. Dwight Garner, New York Times, "A Young Man of Strict Nigerian-American Parents Comes of Age While Coming Out," 5 Mar. 2018 The Washington Capitals give us buy-a-vowel blandness. Erik Brady, USA TODAY, "Which Stanley Cup Final city is more sinful, Las Vegas or Washington?," 6 June 2018 For example, Markle’s vowels might still sound American, but the lilt of the sentence might be less so. Cari Romm, The Cut, "Linguists Explain Meghan Markle’s Apparent New British Accent," 10 July 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for vowel

Middle English, from Anglo-French vowele, from Latin vocalis — more at vocalic

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Statistics for vowel

Last Updated

9 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for vowel

The first known use of vowel was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for vowel

vowel

noun

English Language Learners Definition of vowel

: a speech sound made with your mouth open and your tongue in the middle of your mouth not touching your teeth, lips, etc.
: a letter (such as a, e, i, o, u, and sometimes y in English) that represents a vowel

vowel

noun
vow·​el | \ ˈvau̇-əl How to pronounce vowel (audio) \

Kids Definition of vowel

1 : a speech sound (as \ə\, \ā\, or \ȯ\) produced without obstruction in the mouth
2 : a letter (as a, e, i, o, u) representing a vowel

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More from Merriam-Webster on vowel

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vowel

Spanish Central: Translation of vowel

Nglish: Translation of vowel for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vowel for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about vowel

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