inflection


inflection
inflection, intonation, accent are comparable when they designate a particular manner of employing the tones of the voice in speech.
Inflection implies change in pitch or tone; it often suggests a variation expressive of emotion or sentiment, and, usually, a momentary mood
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it was not her words, but her inflection, that hurt

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a slight inflection made one feel that one had received a great compliment— Cather

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Intonation is often individual but it is seldom thought of as the result of a mood; it is applied to the rise and fall in pitch that constitutes what is called "speech melody" and that distinguishes the utterance of one individual or group from another
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a ministerial intonation

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we still write ... for the actors, reckon upon their intonations, their gestures— Quiller-Couch

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that peculiar and pleasant intonation that marks the speech of the Hebridean— Black

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In some languages (as Chinese), called "tone languages," fixed pitch, or intonation, distinguishes the various meanings of single words. In a more specific sense, intonation often (as intone always) implies reciting or speaking religious matter (as a psalm or a prayer) in a singing voice, usually in monotone
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intonation of that majestic iambic verse whose measure would have been obscured by a rapid and conversational delivery— Dickinson

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Accent denotes such manner or quality of utterance or tone as may distinguish a particular variety of speech (as one peculiar to a person, race, district, or class)
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a Southern accent

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a Parisian accent

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speak with a refined accent

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Like the other terms in this group, it often suggests, and sometimes indicates, the speaker's feelings
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a different accent was notable in Joseph's voice when he spoke of Azariah— George Moore

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Analogous words: enunciation, pronunciation, articulation (see corresponding verbs at ARTICULATE)

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:
, , , , , / (in declension or in conjugation), , , / (of the voice)


Look at other dictionaries:

  • inflection — 1. Inflection is the process by which words change their form by the addition of suffixes or other means in accordance with their grammatical role. Inflection of nouns usually involves the addition of s or es to form plurals (book / books, church …   Modern English usage

  • Inflection — In*flec tion, n. [L. inflexio : cf. F. inflexion. See {Inflect}.] [Written also {inflecxion}.] 1. The act of inflecting, or the state of being inflected. [1913 Webster] 2. A bend; a fold; a curve; a turn; a twist. [1913 Webster] 3. A slide,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • inflection — early 15c., from M.Fr. inflexion and directly from L. inflexionem (nom. inflexio) a bending, inflection, modification, noun of action from pp. stem of inflectere (see INFLECT (Cf. inflect)). For spelling, see CONNECTION (Cf. connection).… …   Etymology dictionary

  • inflection — [in flek′shən] n. [L inflexio < inflexus, pp. of inflectere: see INFLECT] 1. a turning, bending, or curving 2. a turn, bend, or curve 3. any change in tone or pitch of the voice; modulation [to signal a question by a rising inflection] 4. a… …   English World dictionary

  • inflection — I noun accent, accentuation, cadence, emphasis, expression, intonation, modulation, pitch, stress, tone, voice change associated concepts: demeanor of a witness, polygraph test II index intonation, stress (accent) …   Law dictionary

  • inflection — inflection, inflexion англ. [инфле/кшн] муз. интонация …   Словарь иностранных музыкальных терминов

  • inflection — [n] accent, intonation articulation, change, emphasis, enunciation, modulation, pitch, pronunciation, sound, timbre, tonality, tone, tone of voice, variation; concepts 65,595 Ant. monotone …   New thesaurus

  • inflection — (chiefly Brit. also inflexion) ► NOUN 1) Grammar a change in the form of a word (typically the ending) to express a grammatical function or attribute such as tense, mood, person, number, case, and gender. 2) a variation in intonation or pitch of… …   English terms dictionary

  • Inflection — In grammar, inflection or inflexion is the way language handles grammatical relations and relational categories such as tense, mood, voice, aspect, person, number, gender, case. In covert inflection, such categories are not overtly expressed.… …   Wikipedia

  • inflection — inflectionless, adj. /in flek sheuhn/, n. 1. modulation of the voice; change in pitch or tone of voice. 2. Also, flection. Gram. a. the process or device of adding affixes to or changing the shape of a base to give it a different syntactic… …   Universalium