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The entry for "accent" is displayed below.
Also see: accented
WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2020
ac•cent /n. ˈæksɛnt; v. also ækˈsɛnt/USA pronunciation
n. WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2020
v. [~ + object]
- Phoneticsthe amount of prominence of a spoken sound, in terms of pronunciation, pitch, or a combination of these:The accent in the word "absorb'' is on the second syllable, "-sorb''.
- a mark indicating stress (as ˈ, ˌ), vowel quality (as French grave `
, acute ´
, circumflex ˆ
), pitch, etc. Also called accent mark.
- Phoneticsa way of pronouncing sounds, words, etc., that is usually found in the speech of a particular person, group, or locality:a southern accent.
- a way of pronouncing words that is recognized as being of foreign origin:still speaks with an accent after ten years.
- special attention or emphasis:Our supervisor puts an accent on reliability.
- Weights and Measuresa symbol used to indicate a particular unit of measure, such as feet (′) or inches (ʺ), minutes (′) or seconds (ʺ).
ac•cen•tu•al /ækˈsɛntʃuəl/USA pronunciation adj.
- Phoneticsto pronounce (a sound) with extra loudness, extra length, or higher pitch:Accent the second syllable in the word "absorb''.
- to mark with a written accent or accents.
- to emphasize;
(n. ak′sent;v. ak′sent, ak sent′),USA pronunciation n.
- prominence of a syllable in terms of differential loudness, or of pitch, or length, or of a combination of these.
- degree of prominence of a syllable within a word and sometimes of a word within a phrase:primary accent; secondary accent.
- a mark indicating stress (as ′, ′, or ˈ, ˌ, or ′, ʺ), vowel quality (as French grave ˋ, acute ˊ, circumflex ˆ ), form (as French la "the'' versus là "there''), or pitch.
- any similar mark.
- regularly recurring stress.
- a mark indicating stress or some other distinction in pronunciation or value.
- a musical tone or pattern of pitch inherent in a particular language either as a feature essential to the identification of a vowel or a syllable or to the general acoustic character of the language. Cf. tone (def. 7).
- Often, accents.
- the unique speech patterns, inflections, choice of words, etc., that identify a particular individual:We recognized his accents immediately. She corrected me in her usual mild accents.
- the distinctive style or tone characteristic of an author, composer, etc.:the unmistakably Brahmsian accents of the sonata; She recognized the familiar accents of Robert Frost in the poem.
- a mode of pronunciation, as pitch or tone, emphasis pattern, or intonation, characteristic of or peculiar to the speech of a particular person, group, or locality:French accent; Southern accent.Cf. tone (def. 5).
- such a mode of pronunciation recognized as being of foreign origin:He still speaks with an accent.
- a stress or emphasis given to certain notes.
- a mark noting this.
- stress or emphasis regularly recurring as a feature of rhythm.
- a symbol used to distinguish similar quantities that differ in value, as in b′, b ʺ, b‴
(called b prime, b second or b double prime, b third or b triple prime, respectively).
- a symbol used to indicate a particular unit of measure, as feet (′) or inches (ʺ), minutes (′) or seconds (ʺ).
- a symbol used to indicate the order of a derivative of a function in calculus, as f′ (called f prime) is the first derivative of a function f.
- words or tones expressive of some emotion.
- accents, words;
speech:He spoke in accents bold.
- distinctive character or tone:an accent of whining complaint.
- special attention, stress, or emphasis:an accent on accuracy.
- a detail that is emphasized by contrasting with its surroundings:a room decorated in navy blue with two red vases as accents.
- a distinctive but subordinate pattern, motif, color, flavor, or the like:The salad dressing had an accent of garlic.
(n. ak′sent;v. ak′sent, ak sent′),USA pronunciation adj.
- to pronounce with prominence (a syllable within a word or a word within a phrase):to accent the first syllable of "into''; to accent the first word of "White House.''
- to mark with a written accent or accents.
- to give emphasis or prominence to;
- Latin accentus speaking tone, equivalent. to ac- ac- + -centus, combining form of cantus song (see canto); translation of Greek prosōidía prosody
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
accent n /ˈæksənt/
- the characteristic mode of pronunciation of a person or group, esp one that betrays social or geographical origin
- the relative prominence of a spoken or sung syllable, esp with regard to stress or pitch
- a mark (such as ˈ , ˌ , ´ or `) used in writing to indicate the stress or prominence of a syllable. Such a mark may also be used to indicate that a written syllable is to be pronounced, esp when such pronunciation is not usual, as in turnèd
- any of various marks or symbols conventionally used in writing certain languages to indicate the quality of a vowel, or for some other purpose, such as differentiation of homographs
- rhythmic stress in verse or prose
- stress placed on certain notes in a piece of music, indicated by a symbol printed over the note concerned
- the rhythmic pulse of a piece or passage, usually represented as the stress on the first beat of each bar
- a distinctive characteristic of anything, such as taste, pattern, style, etc
- particular attention or emphasis: an accent on learning
- a strongly contrasting detail
Etymology: 14th Century: via Old French from Latin accentus, from ad- to + cantus chant, song. The Latin is a rendering of Greek prosōidia a song sung to music, the tone of a syllable
- to mark with an accent in writing, speech, music, etc
- to lay particular emphasis or stress on