What does Speak mean?

Definitions for Speak

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

Princeton's WordNet

  1. talk, speak, utter, mouth, verbalize, verbaliseverb

    express in speech

    "She talks a lot of nonsense"; "This depressed patient does not verbalize"

  2. talk, speakverb

    exchange thoughts; talk with

    "We often talk business"; "Actions talk louder than words"

  3. speak, talkverb

    use language

    "the baby talks already"; "the prisoner won't speak"; "they speak a strange dialect"

  4. address, speakverb

    give a speech to

    "The chairman addressed the board of trustees"

  5. speakverb

    make a characteristic or natural sound

    "The drums spoke"


  1. speaknoun

    a low class bar, a speakeasy.

    Corporate speak; IT speak

  2. speaknoun

    language, jargon, or terminology used uniquely in a particular environment or group.

    Corporate speak; IT speak

  3. speakverb

    To communicate with one's voice, to say words out loud.

  4. speakverb

    To have a conversation.

    It's been ages since we've spoken.

  5. speakverb

    To communicate or converse by some means other than orally, such as writing or facial expressions.

  6. speakverb

    To deliver a message to a group; to deliver a speech.

    This evening I shall speak on the topic of correct English usage.

  7. speakverb

    To be able to communicate in a language.

    He speaks Mandarin fluently.

  8. speakverb

    To utter.

    I was so surprised that I couldn't speak a word.

  9. speakverb

    To communicate (some fact or feeling); to bespeak, to indicate.

  10. Etymology: From speken, from specan, alteration of earlier sprecan, from sprekanan, from spreg-. Cognate with Dutch spreken, German sprechen, Albanian shpreh.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To Speakverb

    Saul spake not any think that day. 1 Sam. xx. 26.

    Mordecai had spoken good. Esth. vii. 9.

    Consider of it, take advice, and speak your minds. Judges.

    They sat down with him upon the ground, and none spake a word. Job ii. 13.

    When divers were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of that way before the multitude, he departed. Acts xix. 9.

    You, from my youth,
    Have known and try’d me, speak I more than truth? George Sandys.

    What you keep by you, you may change and mend,
    But words once spoke can never be recall’d. Edmund Waller.

    Under the tropick is our language spoke,
    And part of Flanders hath receiv’d our yoke. Edmund Waller.

    He no where speaks it out, or in direct terms calls them substances. John Locke.

    Colours speak all languages, but words are understood only by such a people or nation. Spectator.

    It is my father’s musick
    To speak your deeds, not little of his care
    To have them recompensed. William Shakespeare, Winter’s Tale.

    If he have need of thee, he will deceive thee, smile upon thee, put thee in hope, speak thee fair, and say, what wantest thou? Ecclus xiii. 6.

    Let heav’n’s wide circuit speak
    The Maker’s high magnificence. John Milton.

  2. To Speakverb

    Preterite, spake or spoke; participle passive, spoken;

    Etymology: specan , Saxon; spreken, Dutch.

    Speaking is nothing else than a sensible expression of the notions of the mind, by several discriminations of utterance of voice, used as signs, having by consent several determinate significancies. William Holder.

    Hannah spake in her heart, only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard. 1 Sam. i. 13.

    Many of the nobility made themselves popular by speaking in parliament, against those things which were most grateful to his majesty, and which still passed notwithstanding their contradiction. Edward Hyde.

    Thersites, though the most presumptuous Greek,
    Yet durst not for Achilles’ armour speak. Dryden.

    A knave should have some countenance at his friend’s request. An honest man, sir, is able to speak for himself when a knave is not. William Shakespeare, Henry IV.

    The general and his wife are talking of it;
    And she speaks for you stoutly. William Shakespeare, Othello.

    When he had no power,
    He was your enemy; still spake against
    Your liberties and charters. William Shakespeare, Coriolanus.

    Were such things here as we do speak about?
    Or have we eaten of the insane root,
    That takes the reason prisoner. William Shakespeare, King Lear.

    Lot went out and spake unto his sons in law. Gen. xix. 14.

    The fire you speak of,
    If any flames of it approach my fortunes,
    I’ll quench it not with water, but with ruin. Ben Jonson.

    They could never be lost, but by an universal deluge which has been spoken to already. John Tillotson, Sermons.

    Lucan speaks of a part of Cæsar’s army that came to him, from the Leman-lake, in the beginning of the civil war. Addis.

    Had Luther spoke up to this accusation, yet Chrysostom’s example would have been his defence. Francis Atterbury.

    Make all your trumpets speak, give them all breath,
    Those clam’rous harbingers of blood and death. William Shakespeare.

    Thou can’st not fear us, Pompey, with thy sails,
    We’ll speak with thee at sea. William Shakespeare, Ant. and Cleopatra.

    I spake with one that came from thence,
    That freely render’d me these news for true. William Shakespeare.

    Nicholas was by a herald sent for to come into the great bassa; Solyman disdaining to speak with him himself. Richard Knolles.


  1. Speak

    Speak is a single by the metal band Godsmack from their fourth album IV. It reached number one on the U. S. Mainstream Rock chart and number ten on the Modern Rock chart.


  1. speak

    To speak means to communicate or express oneself by using verbal or oral language. It involves the production of sounds, words, or phrases to convey thoughts, ideas, or information to others. Speaking typically involves the use of the vocal apparatus, such as the mouth, tongue, and vocal cords, to articulate words and communicate effectively.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Speakverb

    to utter words or articulate sounds, as human beings; to express thoughts by words; as, the organs may be so obstructed that a man may not be able to speak

  2. Speakverb

    to express opinions; to say; to talk; to converse

  3. Speakverb

    to utter a speech, discourse, or harangue; to adress a public assembly formally

  4. Speakverb

    to discourse; to make mention; to tell

  5. Speakverb

    to give sound; to sound

  6. Speakverb

    to convey sentiments, ideas, or intelligence as if by utterance; as, features that speak of self-will

  7. Speakverb

    to utter with the mouth; to pronounce; to utter articulately, as human beings

  8. Speakverb

    to utter in a word or words; to say; to tell; to declare orally; as, to speak the truth; to speak sense

  9. Speakverb

    to declare; to proclaim; to publish; to make known; to exhibit; to express in any way

  10. Speakverb

    to talk or converse in; to utter or pronounce, as in conversation; as, to speak Latin

  11. Speakverb

    to address; to accost; to speak to


  1. Speak

    Speak, published in 1999, is Laurie Halse Anderson's young adult novel that tells the story of Melinda Sordino's rape, recovery, and confession. After being raped at a party, Melinda is ostracized by her peers because she will not say why she called the police. Unable to verbalize what happened, Melinda nearly stops speaking altogether, expressing her voice through the art she produces for Mr. Freeman's class. This expression slowly helps Melinda acknowledge that she was raped, face her attacker, and recreate her identity. Speak is considered a problem novel, or trauma novel. Melinda's story is written in a diary format, consisting of a nonlinear plot and jumpy narrative that mimics the trauma she experienced. Additionally, Anderson employs intertextual symbolism in the narrative, incorporating fairy tale imagery, Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter, and Maya Angelou, to further represent Melinda's trauma. Since it was published, the novel has won several awards and has been translated into sixteen languages. The book has faced censorship for the sexual content of Melinda's rape. In 2004, Jessica Sharzer directed the film adaptation, starring Kristen Stewart as Melinda.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Speak

    spēk, v.i. to utter words or articulate sounds: to say: to talk: to converse: to sound: to give expression by any means, to intimate, to hint.—v.t. to pronounce: to converse in: to address: to declare: to express by signs:—pa.t. spoke or spāke; pa.p. spō′ken.adj. Speak′able, capable of being spoken: (Milt.) having the power of speech.—ns. Speak′-eas′y (U.S.), an illicit dram-shop, shebeen; Speak′er, one who speaks or proclaims: the person who presides in a deliberative or legislative body, as the House of Commons; Speak′ership, the office of Speaker; Speak′ing, the act of expressing ideas in words: discourse.—adj. seeming to speak: natural: used to assist the voice.—adv. Speak′ingly.—ns. Speak′ing-trum′pet, an instrument for enabling the sound of the voice to be conveyed to a greater distance; Speak′ing-tube, a tube communicating from one room to another for speaking through; Speak′ing-voice, the kind of voice used in speaking.—Speak a ship, to hail and speak to some one on board her; Speak fair, to address one in conciliatory terms; Speak for, to speak on behalf of: to be a proof of: to bespeak, engage; Speaking terms, a relationship between two persons not extending beyond the courtesy of verbal salutation, &c.; Speak of, to talk about: to mention, or to be worth mentioning; Speak one's mind, to say frankly what one thinks; Speak out, to assert boldly or loudly; Speak to, to reprove: to attest, testify to; Speak up, to speak out; Speak well for, to witness favourably to.—So to speak, as one might put it, as it were. [A.S. specan (for sprecan); Dut. spreken, Ger. sprechen.]

Editors Contribution

  1. speak

    To communicate or voice using words language and sound from the mouth.

    They spoke clearly to discuss the creation of a unity government.

    Submitted by MaryC on February 22, 2020  

Suggested Resources

  1. speak

    Song lyrics by speak -- Explore a large variety of song lyrics performed by speak on the Lyrics.com website.

  2. Speak

    Talk vs. Speak -- In this Grammar.com article you will learn the differences between the words Talk and Speak.

Surnames Frequency by Census Records

  1. SPEAK

    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Speak is ranked #42308 in terms of the most common surnames in America.

    The Speak surname appeared 513 times in the 2010 census and if you were to sample 100,000 people in the United States, approximately 0 would have the surname Speak.

    98% or 503 total occurrences were White.

Matched Categories

British National Corpus

  1. Spoken Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Speak' in Spoken Corpus Frequency: #1186

  2. Written Corpus Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Speak' in Written Corpus Frequency: #658

  3. Verbs Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Speak' in Verbs Frequency: #85

Anagrams for Speak »

  1. peaks

  2. spake

  3. sapek

How to pronounce Speak?

How to say Speak in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of Speak in Chaldean Numerology is: 1

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of Speak in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of Speak in a Sentence

  1. James Acho:

    I speak for his dozens of buddies, many of whom go back to our days at Catholic Central High, and we want justice for his family.

  2. David Zaslav:

    Jeff is a good friend of mine, I can’t speak to this issue, we don’t own the company yet, cNN is a fantastic asset, I can’t wait to get in there.

  3. Tawny Holmes:

    Not all deaf children can learn to hear or speak, children as old as 13 to 14 show up at schools for the deaf, and they are language deprived. They have a limited understanding. The social and emotional impact is so deep. They have had no access to language since birth, despite being constantly conditioned in spoken English.

  4. Justice Horn:

    The most important thing a white ally can do [ is ] fight our battles when there are no people of color around, the problem is that too many people claim to fight against the system, but do not speak out against prejudice and racism when there are no people of color around.

  5. Christen Kuikoua:

    In the kingdom of self love, I reign as an unapologetic black king, Adorned in the aesthetics of my truth. Let them speak, let them roar: their insults are mere echoes in the grandeur of my existence. What they say will fade, for i am the architect of my own narrative, where confidence is my crown, and acceptance is my throne. There is nothing they can do to dim the brilliance of my royal spirit

Popularity rank by frequency of use


Translations for Speak

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"Speak." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 23 Jun 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/Speak>.

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