Meaning of VOICE in English


I. voice 1 S2 W1 /vɔɪs/ BrE AmE noun

[ Date: 1200-1300 ; Language: Old French ; Origin: vois , from Latin vox ]

1 . SPEAKING [uncountable and countable] the sounds that you make when you speak, or the ability to make these sounds:

He recognized her voice instantly.

I could hear angry voices.


a) [uncountable and countable] the quality of sound you produce when you sing:

Sophie’s got a lovely singing voice

b) [countable] a person singing:

a piece written for six voices and piano


a) [singular, uncountable] the right or ability to express an opinion, to vote, or to influence decisions:

Parents should have a voice in deciding how their children are educated.

b) [countable] an opinion or wish that is expressed:

The government needs to listen to the voice of middle-class Americans.

a fair, democratic society, in which individuals are able to make their voice heard (=express their opinion so that people notice it)

Since the new program was introduced, there have been some dissenting voices (=people expressing disagreement) .

Senator Prior spoke out, adding her voice to the call for new laws to protect the environment.

4 . speak with one voice if a group of people speak with one voice, they all express the same opinion

5 . REPRESENTATIVE [singular] a person, organization, newspaper etc that expresses the opinions or wishes of a group of people

voice of

The senator is the voice of the religious right.

6 . the voice of reason/experience etc opinions or ideas that are reasonable, based on experience etc, or someone who has these ideas:

Ben, as ever, has been the voice of reason throughout the whole crisis.

7 . FEELINGS give voice to something to express your feelings or thoughts:

Participants are encouraged to give voice to their personal hopes, fears and dreams.

8 . inner voice thoughts or feelings that you do not express but seem to warn, criticize, or advise you:

My inner voice told me to be cautious.

9 . GRAMMAR active/passive voice technical the form of a verb that shows whether the subject of a sentence does an action or has an action done to it

• • •


■ adjectives

▪ loud

Her voice was loud and clear.

▪ quiet/low/soft (=not loud)

When he spoke, his voice was soft and gentle.

▪ a deep/low voice (=near the bottom of the range of sounds)

She heard the deep voice of her father downstairs.

▪ a high voice (=near the top of the range of sounds)

They used to repeat her words in silly high voices.

▪ a clear voice

Natalia’s clear voice rang out.

▪ a small voice (=quiet and not strong or confident)

She answered in a small voice, ‘I think I was afraid.’

▪ a trembling/shaking voice (=a voice that shakes because someone is very nervous or frightened)

He stood up and began to speak in a trembling voice.

▪ a squeaky voice (=very high and not strong)

The mouse talks in a little squeaky voice.

▪ a husky voice (=low and slightly rough but in an attractive way)

She spoke in a husky voice, as though her throat was sore.

▪ a gravelly voice (=very deep and slightly rough)

He sang to her in his famous gravelly voice.

▪ a sing-song voice (=a voice that goes high and low in a pleasant musical way)

She began to recite the poem in a sing-song voice.

■ verbs

▪ raise your voice (=speak more loudly)

She did not raise her voice, or express any anger.

▪ lower your voice (=speak more quietly)

He lowered his voice to a whisper.

▪ keep your voice down (=not speak loudly)

Keep your voice down, they’ll hear you!

▪ lose your voice (=lose the ability to speak, for example when you have a cold)

I'll have to whisper because I've lost my voice.

▪ sb’s voice rises (=becomes louder or higher)

Her voice rose in panic.

▪ sb’s voice drops (=becomes lower)

Lockhart’s voice dropped so that it could only just be heard.

▪ sb’s voice breaks/cracks (=becomes higher or unsteady because they are upset)

Her voice broke and she was unable to continue.

▪ a boy’s voice breaks (=becomes deep as he becomes a man)

His voice had only recently broken.

▪ sb’s voice trembles/shakes (=sounds unsteady)

His voice shook with anger.

▪ sb’s voice trails off/away (=becomes quieter until you cannot hear it)

‘It's just that … ’, his voice trailed away uncertainly.

■ phrases

▪ in a loud/soft/deep etc voice

‘Where is she?’, Kate demanded in a shrill voice.

▪ sb’s tone of voice

His tone of voice was aggressive.

▪ at the top of your voice (=in a very loud voice)

She shouted ‘Help!’ at the top of her voice.

II. voice 2 BrE AmE verb [transitive]

1 . to tell people your opinions or feelings about a particular subject:

The senator voiced concern at how minorities and immigrants are treated in California.

She angrily voiced her objections.

2 . technical to produce a sound with a movement of the ↑ vocal cords as well as the breath

• • •


■ to say something

▪ say to tell someone something, using words:

‘I really ought to go,’ she said.


Lauren said she’d probably be late.

▪ state to say something, especially in a definite or formal way – used in official contexts:

The witness stated that he had never seen the woman before.


Please state your name and address.

▪ announce to publicly tell people about something:

The chairman announced his resignation.


The results will be announced tomorrow.


We will announce the winners next Sunday.


They were announcing the train times over the loudspeaker system.

▪ declare to say something very firmly:

‘My personal life is none of your business,’ she declared.

▪ mention to talk about someone or something, especially without giving many details:

Did Tom mention anything about what happened at school?


Your name was mentioned!

▪ express to let someone know your feelings by putting them into words:

Young children often find it difficult to express their emotions.

▪ comment to say what your opinion is about someone or something:

The prime minister was asked to comment on the crisis.

▪ note/remark formal to say that you have noticed that something is true – used especially in formal writing:

We have already noted that most old people live alone.


Someone once remarked that the problem with computers is that they only give you answers.

▪ add to say something more, after what has already been said:

He added that he thought it could be done fairly cheaply.

▪ point out to mention something that seems particularly important or relevant:

Dr Graham points out that most children show some signs of abnormal behaviour.


It’s worth pointing out that few people actually die of this disease.

▪ air to talk about your opinions, worries, or the things you disagree about: air your views/grievances/differences :

The programme will give listeners the chance to air their views about immigration.


Workers were able to air their grievances.

▪ voice to talk publicly about your feelings or about whether you approve or disapprove of something formal : voice concern/support/doubt/fears etc :

The president has already voiced his support for the proposal.


She voiced concern for the safety of the hostages.

Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English.      Longman - Словарь современного английского языка.