voice - definition and synonyms


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  1. 1
    [countable/uncountable] the sounds that someone makes when they speak

    A female voice answered the phone.

    We could hear voices in the next apartment.

    He tried to keep the irritation out of his voice.

    a man with a deep/soft/loud voice

    in a ... voice:

    The woman at the desk greeted him in a bored voice.

    tone of voice (=the aspect of your voice that shows how you feel):

    I knew from his tone of voice that he was extremely annoyed.

    in someone’s voice (=when someone’s attitude or feelings are shown in the way that they speak):

    Phillips called back later, and this time there was real irritation in his voice.

    1. a.
      [uncountable] someone’s ability to speak
      lose your voice:

      I have a cold – I think I’m losing my voice.

    2. b.
      [countable/uncountable] someone’s ability to sing

      My father had a fine bass voice.

      be in good/fine voice (=be singing well):

      You’re in good voice tonight!

       Synonyms and related words
    3. c.
      [countable] music one of the singers in a piece of classical music

      an arrangement for piano and four voices

       Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    [singular] the right or opportunity to express your opinions and influence what happens

    The apartheid system left the majority of the population without a political voice.

    have a voice (in something):

    Parents should have a voice in any changes to the school curriculum.

    give voice to something (=express something publicly):

    Her article gave voice to the anger felt by many local people.

    1. a.
      [countable] the opinion of a person or group
      voice of:

      The voice of ordinary party members was rarely listened to.

      make your voice heard (=make sure that your opinion is known to others):

      Anti-capitalist groups used street protests as a way of making their voices heard.

  3. 3
    [singular] a person, newspaper, organization etc that expresses a particular idea or that represents the opinions of a particular group

    The paper sees itself as the authentic voice of Middle England.

    voice of reason/authority/experience etc:

    The senator has long been a voice of reason on this issue.

  4. 4
    [singular] linguistics in English, voice refers to the choice of either an active verb group or a passive verb group. In the active voice, the subject is the person or thing that does or is responsible for the action of the verb. In the passive voice, the subject is the person or thing that is affected by the action of the verb. For example in the sentence ‘The kids have learnt the importance of a healthier diet’, the verb group ‘have learnt’ is active. In the sentence ‘Lessons will be learnt from this disaster’, the verb group ‘will be learnt’ is passive.
    See also active, passive