What does Sound mean?

Definitions for Sound

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word Sound.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. soundnoun

    the particular auditory effect produced by a given cause

    "the sound of rain on the roof"; "the beautiful sound of music"

  2. sound, auditory sensationnoun

    the subjective sensation of hearing something

    "he strained to hear the faint sounds"

  3. soundnoun

    mechanical vibrations transmitted by an elastic medium

    "falling trees make a sound in the forest even when no one is there to hear them"

  4. soundnoun

    the sudden occurrence of an audible event

    "the sound awakened them"

  5. audio, soundnoun

    the audible part of a transmitted signal

    "they always raise the audio for commercials"

  6. phone, speech sound, soundnoun

    (phonetics) an individual sound unit of speech without concern as to whether or not it is a phoneme of some language

  7. strait, soundnoun

    a narrow channel of the sea joining two larger bodies of water

  8. soundadjective

    a large ocean inlet or deep bay

    "the main body of the sound ran parallel to the coast"

  9. soundadjective

    financially secure and safe

    "sound investments"; "a sound economy"

  10. healthy, intelligent, levelheaded, level-headed, soundadjective

    exercising or showing good judgment

    "healthy scepticism"; "a healthy fear of rattlesnakes"; "the healthy attitude of French laws"; "healthy relations between labor and management"; "an intelligent solution"; "a sound approach to the problem"; "sound advice"; "no sound explanation for his decision"

  11. soundadjective

    in good condition; free from defect or damage or decay

    "a sound timber"; "the wall is sound"; "a sound foundation"

  12. good, soundadjective

    in excellent physical condition

    "good teeth"; "I still have one good leg"; "a sound mind in a sound body"

  13. reasoned, sound, well-groundedadjective

    logically valid

    "a sound argument"

  14. legal, sound, effectualadjective

    having legal efficacy or force

    "a sound title to the property"

  15. soundadjective

    free from moral defect

    "a man of sound character"

  16. heavy, profound, sound, wakelessadjective

    (of sleep) deep and complete

    "a heavy sleep"; "fell into a profound sleep"; "a sound sleeper"; "deep wakeless sleep"

  17. soundverb


    "a sound thrashing"

  18. soundverb

    appear in a certain way

    "This sounds interesting"

  19. sound, goverb

    make a certain noise or sound

    "She went `Mmmmm'"; "The gun went `bang'"

  20. soundverb

    give off a certain sound or sounds

    "This record sounds scratchy"

  21. soundverb

    announce by means of a sound

    "sound the alarm"

  22. voice, sound, vocalize, vocaliseverb

    utter with vibrating vocal chords

  23. soundverb

    cause to sound

    "sound the bell"; "sound a certain note"

  24. fathom, soundverb

    measure the depth of (a body of water) with a sounding line


  1. Soundnoun

    The strait that separates Zealand (an island of Denmark) from Scania (part of Sweden); also sometimes called by the Danish name, Øresund.

  2. Etymology: sounden, from sonder, from sonde of Germanic origin, compare sundgyrd, sundline, sund. More at Etymology 3 above

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Soundadjective

    Etymology: sund , Saxon.

    I am fall’n out with my more headier will,
    To take the indispos’d and sickly fit
    For the sound man. William Shakespeare, King Lear.

    He hath a heart as sound as a bell, and his tongue is the clapper; for what his heart thinks, his tongue speaks. William Shakespeare.

    He hath received him safe and sound. Luke xv. 27.

    We can preserve
    Unhurt our minds, and understanding sound. John Milton.

    The king visits all around,
    Comforts the sick, congratulates the sound;
    Honours the princely chiefs. Dryden.

    But Capys, and the rest of sounder mind,
    The fatal present to the flames design’d,
    Or to the deep. Dryden.

    When a word, which originally signifies any particular object, is attributed to several other objects, on account of some evident reference or relation to the original idea, this is peculiarly called an analogical word; so a sound or healthy pulse, a sound digestion, sound sleep, are all so called, with reference to a sound and healthy constitution; but if you speak of sound doctrine, or sound speech, this is by way of resemblance to health, and the words are metaphorical. Isaac Watts, Logick.

    Whom although to know be life, and joy to make mention of his name; yet our soundest knowledge is to know that we know him not as indeed he is, neither can know him: and our safest eloquence concerning him is silence. Richard Hooker.

    Let my heart be sound in thy statutes, that I be not ashamed. Psal. cxix. 80.

    The rules are sound and useful, and may serve your devotion. William Wake.

    The men are very strong and able of body; and therefore either give sound strokes with their clubs wherewith they fight, or else shoot strong shots with their bows. George Abbot.

    They reserved their titles, tenures, and signiories whole and sound to themselves. Edmund Spenser, Ireland.

    New wak’d from soundest sleep,
    Soft on the flow’ry herb I found me laid
    In balmy sweat. John Milton, Paradise Lost.

  2. Soundadverb

    Soundly; heartily; completely fast.

    The messenger approaching to him spake,
    But his waste words return’d to him in vain;
    So sound he slept that nought might him awake. Fa. Queen.

  3. Soundnoun

    A shallow sea, such as may be sounded.

    Etymology: sonde, French.

    The sound of Denmark, where ships pay toll. William Camden.

    Behold I come, sent from the Stygian sound,
    As a dire vapour that had cleft the ground,
    T’ ingender with the night, and blast the day. Ben Jonson.

    Him young Thoosa bore, the bright increase
    Of Phorcys, dreaded in the sounds and seas. Alexander Pope.

  4. Soundnoun

    A probe, an instrument used by chirurgeons to feel what is out of reach of the fingers.

    Etymology: sonde, French.

    The patient being laid on a table, pass the sound till it meet with some resistance. Samuel Sharp, Surgery.

  5. Soundnoun

    The cuttle-fish. Robert Ainsworth

  6. Soundnoun

    Etymology: son, French; sonus, Latin.

    Heaps of huge words uphoarded hideously
    With horrid sound, though having little sense,
    And thereby wanting due intelligence,
    Have marred the face of goodly poesy,
    And made a monster of their fantasy. Edmund Spenser.

    Come, sisters, cheer we up his sprights,
    And shew the best of our delights;
    I’ll charm the air to give a sound,
    While you perform your antick round. William Shakespeare, Macbeth.

    Dash a stone against a stone in the bottom of the water, and it maketh a sound: so a long pole struck upon gravel in the bottom of the water, maketh a sound. Francis Bacon, Nat. Hist.

    The warlike sound of trumpets loud. John Milton.

    Whene’er he spoke his voice was heard around,
    Loud as a trumpet with a silver sound. Dryden.

    That which is conveyed into the brain by the ear is called sound; though, ’till it affect the perceptive part, it be nothing but motion. John Locke.

    He contented himself with doubtful and general terms, which might make no ill sound in mens ears. John Locke.

    Let us consider this proposition as to its meaning; for it is the sense and not sound that must be the principle. John Locke.

  7. To Soundverb

    And many nymphs about them flocking round,
    And many tritons, which their horns did sound. Edmund Spenser.

    Michael bid sound
    Th’ archangel trumpet. John Milton.

    Misenus lay; none so renown’d
    The warrior trumpet in the field to sound;
    With breathing brass to kindle fierce alarms,
    And rouze to dare their fate in honourable arms. Dryden.

    Once Jove from Ida did both hosts survey,
    And, when he pleas’d to thunder, part the fray;
    Here heav’n in vain that kind retreat should sound,
    The louder cannon had the thunder drown’d. Edmund Waller.

    Sun, sound his praise. John Milton.

  8. To Soundverb

    In this secret there is a gulf, which while we live we shall never sound. Richard Hooker.

    You are, Hastings, much too shallow
    To sound the bottom of the after-times. William Shakespeare, Hen. IV.

    Has he never before sounded you in this business. William Shakespeare.

    Invites these lords, and those he meant to sound. Daniel.

    I was in jest,
    And by that offer meant to sound your breast. Dryden.

    I’ve sounded my Numidians, man by man,
    And find ’em ripe for a revolt. Joseph Addison, Cato.

  9. To Soundverb

    To try with the sounding line.

    The shipmen deemed that they drew near to some country and sounded and found it near twenty fathoms. Acts xxvii.

    Beyond this we have no more a positive distinct notion of, infinite space than a mariner has of the depth of the sea, where having let down a large portion of his sounding-line, he reaches no bottom. John Locke.

  10. To Soundverb

    To make a noise; to emit a noise.

    From you sounded out the word of the Lord. 1 Thes. i. 8.

    Trumpet once more to sound at general doom. John Milton.

    That with one blast through the whole house does bound,
    And first taught speaking trumpets how to sound. Dryden.

    Thither the silver sounding lyres
    Shall call the smiling loves and young desires. Alexander Pope.

    Why do you start, and seem to fear
    Things that do sound so fair? William Shakespeare.

    They being told there was small hope of ease
    To be expected to their evils from hence,
    Were willing at the first to give an ear
    To any thing that sounded liberty. Ben Jonson, Catiline.

    This relation sounds rather like a chymical dream than a philosophical truth. John Wilkins, Math. Magic.


  1. Sound

    In physics, sound is a vibration that propagates as an acoustic wave, through a transmission medium such as a gas, liquid or solid. In human physiology and psychology, sound is the reception of such waves and their perception by the brain. Only acoustic waves that have frequencies lying between about 20 Hz and 20 kHz, the audio frequency range, elicit an auditory percept in humans. In air at atmospheric pressure, these represent sound waves with wavelengths of 17 meters (56 ft) to 1.7 centimeters (0.67 in). Sound waves above 20 kHz are known as ultrasound and are not audible to humans. Sound waves below 20 Hz are known as infrasound. Different animal species have varying hearing ranges.


  1. sound

    Sound is a form of energy that is transmitted through waves, typically in the form of vibrations or oscillations, which can be perceived by the human ear. It is created by the disturbance or movement of particles, such as molecules or atoms, in a medium, which can be a solid, liquid, or gas. Sound waves travel through the medium in a series of compressions and rarefactions, causing changes in air pressure. The human ear detects these pressure changes and converts them into electrical signals that the brain interprets as sound.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Soundnoun

    the air bladder of a fish; as, cod sounds are an esteemed article of food

  2. Soundnoun

    a cuttlefish

  3. Sound

    whole; unbroken; unharmed; free from flaw, defect, or decay; perfect of the kind; as, sound timber; sound fruit; a sound tooth; a sound ship

  4. Sound

    healthy; not diseased; not being in a morbid state; -- said of body or mind; as, a sound body; a sound constitution; a sound understanding

  5. Sound

    firm; strong; safe

  6. Sound

    free from error; correct; right; honest; true; faithful; orthodox; -- said of persons; as, a sound lawyer; a sound thinker

  7. Sound

    founded in truth or right; supported by justice; not to be overthrown on refuted; not fallacious; as, sound argument or reasoning; a sound objection; sound doctrine; sound principles

  8. Sound

    heavy; laid on with force; as, a sound beating

  9. Sound

    undisturbed; deep; profound; as, sound sleep

  10. Sound

    founded in law; legal; valid; not defective; as, a sound title to land

  11. Soundadverb


  12. Soundnoun

    a narrow passage of water, or a strait between the mainland and an island; also, a strait connecting two seas, or connecting a sea or lake with the ocean; as, the Sound between the Baltic and the german Ocean; Long Island Sound

  13. Soundverb

    to measure the depth of; to fathom; especially, to ascertain the depth of by means of a line and plummet

  14. Soundverb

    fig.: To ascertain, or try to ascertain, the thoughts, motives, and purposes of (a person); to examine; to try; to test; to probe

  15. Soundverb

    to explore, as the bladder or urethra, with a sound; to examine with a sound; also, to examine by auscultation or percussion; as, to sound a patient

  16. Soundverb

    to ascertain the depth of water with a sounding line or other device

  17. Soundnoun

    any elongated instrument or probe, usually metallic, by which cavities of the body are sounded or explored, especially the bladder for stone, or the urethra for a stricture

  18. Soundnoun

    the peceived object occasioned by the impulse or vibration of a material substance affecting the ear; a sensation or perception of the mind received through the ear, and produced by the impulse or vibration of the air or other medium with which the ear is in contact; the effect of an impression made on the organs of hearing by an impulse or vibration of the air caused by a collision of bodies, or by other means; noise; report; as, the sound of a drum; the sound of the human voice; a horrid sound; a charming sound; a sharp, high, or shrill sound

  19. Soundnoun

    the occasion of sound; the impulse or vibration which would occasion sound to a percipient if present with unimpaired; hence, the theory of vibrations in elastic media such cause sound; as, a treatise on sound

  20. Soundnoun

    noise without signification; empty noise; noise and nothing else

  21. Soundverb

    to make a noise; to utter a voice; to make an impulse of the air that shall strike the organs of hearing with a perceptible effect

  22. Soundverb

    to be conveyed in sound; to be spread or published; to convey intelligence by sound

  23. Soundverb

    to make or convey a certain impression, or to have a certain import, when heard; hence, to seem; to appear; as, this reproof sounds harsh; the story sounds like an invention

  24. Soundverb

    to causse to make a noise; to play on; as, to sound a trumpet or a horn

  25. Soundverb

    to cause to exit as a sound; as, to sound a note with the voice, or on an instrument

  26. Soundverb

    to order, direct, indicate, or proclain by a sound, or sounds; to give a signal for by a certain sound; as, to sound a retreat; to sound a parley

  27. Soundverb

    to celebrate or honor by sounds; to cause to be reported; to publish or proclaim; as, to sound the praises of fame of a great man or a great exploit

  28. Soundverb

    to examine the condition of (anything) by causing the same to emit sounds and noting their character; as, to sound a piece of timber; to sound a vase; to sound the lungs of a patient

  29. Soundverb

    to signify; to import; to denote

  30. Etymology: [OE. sounen, sownen, OF. soner, suner, F. sonner, from L. sonare. See Sound a noise.]


  1. Sound

    Sound is a mechanical wave that is an oscillation of pressure transmitted through some medium, composed of frequencies within the range of hearing.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Sound

    sownd, adj. safe, whole, entire: perfect: healthy, strong: profound: correct: orthodox: weighty.—adv. soundly, completely fast, as in sleep.—adv. Sound′ly.—n. Sound′ness. [A.S. gesund; Ger. gesund, and perh. L. sanus, sound.]

  2. Sound

    sownd, n. a narrow passage of water: a strait. [A.S. sund, a narrow arm of the sea, from swimman, to swim; Ger. sund, a strait.]

  3. Sound

    sownd, n. the air or swimming bladder of a fish. [A.S. sund, swimming.]

  4. Sound

    sownd, v.i. to make a noise: to utter a voice: to spread or be spread: to appear on narration.—v.t. to cause to make a noise: to utter audibly: to direct by a sound or audible signal: to examine by percussion: to publish audibly.—n. the impression produced on the ear by the vibrations of air: noise, particular quality of tone: report, hearing-distance: empty or meaningless noise.—p.adj. Sound′ing, making a sound or noise: having a magnificent sound.—ns. Sound′ing-board, Sound′-board, the thin plate of wood or metal which increases and propagates the sound of a musical instrument: the horizontal board or structure over a pulpit, reading-desk, &c., carrying the speaker's voice towards the audience; Sound′ing-post, Sound′-post, a support set under the bridge of a violin, for propagating the sounds to the body of the instrument.—adj. Sound′less, without sound, silent: not capable of being sounded, unfathomable. [M. E. sounen—O. Fr. soner—L. sonāre, to sound, sonus, a sound.]

  5. Sound

    sownd, v.t. to measure the depth of, esp. with a line and plummet: to probe: to try to discover a man's secret thoughts, wishes, &c.: to test: to introduce an instrument into the bladder to examine it.—v.i. to use the line and lead in ascertaining the depth of water.—n. a probe, an instrument to discover stone in the bladder.—ns. Sound′ing, the ascertaining the depth of water: (pl.) any part of the ocean where a sounding-line will reach the bottom; Sound′ing-lead, the weight at the end of a sounding-line; Sound′ing-line, a line with a plummet at the end for soundings; Sound′ing-rod, a rod for measuring water in a ship's hold. [O. Fr. sonder, to sound; acc. to Diez, from Low L. subundāre—L. sub, under, unda, a wave.]

  6. Sound

    sownd, n. (Spens.) swoon.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Sound

    An alteration of pressure that propagates through an elastic medium.

Dictionary of Nautical Terms

  1. sound

    [Anglo-Saxon, sund]. An arm of the sea over the whole extent of which soundings may be obtained, as on the coasts of Norway and America. Also, any deep bay formed and connected by reefs and sand-banks. On the shores of Scotland it means a narrow channel or strait. Also, the air-bladder of the cod, and generally the swimming-bladder or "soundes of any fysshes." Also, a cuttle-fish.

Military Dictionary and Gazetteer

  1. sound

    The velocity of sound in the air, at the temperature of 32° Fahr., is about 1090 feet in a second. It is increased or diminished 1.07 feet for each degree of temperature above or below 32°. The distance of an object can be ascertained by the report of fire-arms, by observing the number of seconds that elapse between the flash and the report of a gun, and multiplying the number by the velocity of sound in air.

Editors Contribution

  1. soundverb

    A former solid coined sense value of art with no date. 1.) Vibrations that travel through the air or another medium and can be heard when they reach a person's or animal's ear. 2.) Produced by continuous and regular vibrations, as opposed to noise. 3.) The ideas or impressions conveyed by words being emit or cause to emit sound.

    Every animal converse in their own sound of words just like humans communicate in their own language of words.

    Etymology: Tone

    Submitted by Tehorah_Elyon on October 11, 2023  

  2. sound

    A type of energy, language, communication or expression we can hear.

    Sound is a type of energy we can hear.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 8, 2020  

  3. sound

    Trusted, financially secure and safe.

    He remarked that the gentleman was sound.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 8, 2020  

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Sound' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #959

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Sound' in Written Corpus Frequency: #1530

  3. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Sound' in Nouns Frequency: #337

  4. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Sound' in Verbs Frequency: #232

  5. Adjectives Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Sound' in Adjectives Frequency: #866

Anagrams for Sound »

  1. ounds

  2. nodus

How to pronounce Sound?

How to say Sound in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Sound in Chaldean Numerology is: 7

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Sound in Pythagorean Numerology is: 1

Examples of Sound in a Sentence

  1. Ferruccio Lamborghini:

    I'm enjoying the peace and quiet of my vineyard, and when I miss the sound and the fury, I take refuge in my garage and turn the key in the ignition of my Miura.

  2. L. B. Walton:

    Genius might well be defined as the ability to makes a platitude sound as though it were an original remark.

  3. Kathryn Barger:

    Judge Barrera’s hands were tied today – due to the fact that the DA’s office failed to file a motion to transfer Tubbs to adult criminal court, which is where she rightly belongs, instead, we’re left with a 26-year-old individual sentenced to two years in a juvenile facility in isolation, separated by sight and sound from the other juveniles.

  4. John Legittino:

    It may sound good in a meeting at campaign headquarters, but will it look good when it airs on CNN? that's the question. It all has to be designed to translate to TV and photos.

  5. Constantin Stanislavski:

    We have as many planes of speech as does a painting planes of perspective which create perspective in a phrase. The most important word stands out most vividly defined in the very foreground of the sound plane. Less important words create a series of deeper planes.

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for Sound

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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