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Words used to describe someone's voice

adenoidal

adjective

if someone’s voice is adenoidal, some of the sound seems to come through their nose

appealing

adjective

an appealing look, voice etc shows that you want help, approval, or agreement

breathy

adjective

with loud breathing noises

brittle

adjective

if you speak in a brittle voice, you sound as if you are about to cry

croaky

adjective

if someone’s voice sounds croaky, they speak in a low rough voice that sounds as if they have a sore throat

dead

adjective

if someone’s eyes are dead, or if their voice is dead, they feel or show no emotion

disembodied

adjective

a disembodied voice comes from someone who you cannot see

flat

adjective

spoken in a voice that does not go up and down. This word is often used for describing the speech of people from a particular region.

fruity

adjective

a fruity voice or laugh is deep and strong in a pleasant way

grating

adjective

a grating voice, laugh, or sound is unpleasant and annoying

gravelly

adjective

a gravelly voice sounds low and rough

gruff

adjective

a gruff voice has a rough low sound

guttural

adjective

a guttural sound is deep and made at the back of your throat

high-pitched

adjective

a high-pitched voice or sound is very high

hoarse

adjective

someone who is hoarse or has a hoarse voice speaks in a low rough voice, usually because their throat is sore

honeyed

adjective

honeyed words or a honeyed voice sound very nice but you cannot trust the person who is speaking

husky

adjective

a husky voice is deep and sounds hoarse (=as if you have a sore throat), often in an attractive way

low

adjective

a low voice or sound is quiet and difficult to hear

low

adjective

used for describing a deep voice or a sound that has a long wavelength

low

adverb

in a deep voice, or with a deep sound

matter-of-fact

adjective

used about someone’s behaviour or voice

modulated

adjective

a modulated voice is controlled and pleasant to listen to

monotonous

adjective

a monotonous sound or voice is boring and unpleasant because it does not change in loudness or become higher or lower

nasal

adjective

someone with a nasal voice sounds as if they are speaking through their nose

orotund

adjective

an orotund voice is loud and clear

penetrating

adjective

a penetrating voice or sound is so high or loud that it makes you slightly uncomfortable

plummy

adjective

a plummy voice or way of speaking is considered to be typical of an English person of a high social class. This word shows that you dislike people who speak like this.

quietly

adverb

in a quiet voice

raucous

adjective

a raucous voice or noise is loud and sounds rough

ringing

adjective

a ringing sound or voice is very loud and clear

rough

adjective

a rough voice is not soft and is unpleasant to listen to

shrill

adjective

a shrill noise or voice is very loud, high, and unpleasant

silvery

adjective

a silvery voice or sound is clear, light, and pleasant

singsong

adjective

if you speak in a singsong voice, your voice rises and falls in a musical way

small

adjective

a small voice or sound is quiet

smoky

adjective

a smoky voice or smoky eyes are sexually attractive in a slightly mysterious way

softly spoken

adjective

someone who is softly spoken has a quiet gentle voice

soft-spoken

adjective

speaking or said in a quiet gentle voice

sotto voce

adjective, adverb

in a very quiet voice

stentorian

adjective

a stentorian voice sounds very loud and severe

strangled

adjective

a strangled sound is one that someone stops before they finish making it

strangulated

adjective

strangled

strident

adjective

a strident voice or sound is loud and unpleasant

taut

adjective

used about something such as a voice or expression that shows someone is nervous or angry

thick

adjective

if your voice is thick with an emotion, it sounds less clear than usual because of the emotion

thickly

adverb

with a low voice that comes mostly from your throat

thin

adjective

a thin voice or sound is high and unpleasant to listen to

throaty

adjective

a throaty sound is low and seems to come from deep in your throat

tight

adjective

a tight voice or expression shows that you are nervous or annoyed

toneless

adjective

a toneless voice does not express any emotion

tremulous

adjective

if something such as your voice or smile is tremulous, it is not steady, for example because you are afraid or excited

wheezy

adjective

a wheezy noise sounds as if it is made by someone who has difficulty breathing

wobbly

adjective

if your voice is wobbly, it goes up and down, usually because you are frightened, not confident, or are going to cry

booming

adjective

gratingly

adverb

hoarsely

adverb

huskily

adverb

monotonously

adverb

nasally

adverb

quavering

adjective

raucously

adverb

stridently

adverb

tonelessly

adverb

tremulously

adverb

a voice like a foghorn

a very loud voice

in an undertone

using a quiet voice so that someone cannot hear you

someone’s dulcet tones

the sound of someone’s voice as they speak

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the design of buildings or public spaces in a way which discourages people from touching, climbing or sitting on them …

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