Definify.com

Webster 1913 Edition


Phrase

Phrase

,
Noun.
[F., fr. L.
phrasis
diction, phraseology, Gr. [GREEK], fr. [GREEK] to speak.]
1.
A brief expression, sometimes a single word, but usually two or more words forming an expression by themselves, or being a portion of a sentence;
as, an adverbial
phrase
.
“Convey” the wise it call. “Steal!” foh! a fico for the
phrase
.
Shakespeare
2.
A short, pithy expression; especially, one which is often employed; a peculiar or idiomatic turn of speech;
as,
to err is human
.
3.
A mode or form of speech; the manner or style in which any one expreses himself; diction; expression.
Phrases of the hearth.”
Tennyson.
Thou speak’st
In better
phrase
and matter than thou didst.
Shakespeare
4.
(Mus.)
A short clause or portion of a period.
☞ A composition consists first of sentences, or periods; these are subdivided into sections, and these into phrases.
Phrase book
,
a book of idiomatic phrases.
J. S. Blackie.

Phrase

,
Verb.
T.
[
imp. & p. p.
Phrased
;
p. pr. & vb. n.
Phrasing
.]
[Cf. F.
phraser
.]
To express in words, or in peculiar words; to call; to style.
“These suns – for so they phrase 'em.”
Shak.

Phrase

,
Verb.
I.
1.
To use proper or fine phrases.
[R.]
2.
(Mus.)
To group notes into phrases;
as, he
phrases
well
. See
Phrase
,
Noun.
, 4.

Webster 1828 Edition


Phrase

PHRASE

,
Noun.
s as z. [Gr. to speak.]
1.
A short sentence or expression. A phrase may be complete, as when it conveys complete sense, as humanum est errare, to err is human; or it may be incomplete, as when it consists of several words without affirming any thing, or when the noun and the verb do the office of a noun only; as, that which is true, that is, truth, satisfied the mind.
2.
A particular mode of speech; a peculiar sentence of short idiomatic expression; as a Hebrew phrase; an Italian phrase.
3.
Style; expression.
Thou speak'st
In better phrase.
4.
In music, any regular symmetrical course of notes which begin and complete the intended expression.

PHRASE

,
Verb.
T.
To call; to style; to express in words or in peculiar words.
These suns,
For so they phrase them.

Definition 2022


Phrase

Phrase

See also: phrase and phrasé

German

Noun

Phrase f (genitive Phrase, plural Phrasen)

  1. phrase

Usage notes

  • Nowadays the word is often used derogatory like leere Phrase, hohle Phrase.

Synonyms

phrase

phrase

See also: Phrase and phrasé

English

Noun

phrase (plural phrases)

Examples (grammar)

noun phrase: the big bird - head: bird

  1. A short written or spoken expression.
  2. (grammar) A word or group of words that functions as a single unit in the syntax of a sentence, usually consisting of a head, or central word, and elaborating words.
    • 2013 November 30, Paul Davis, Letters: Say it as simply as possible”, in The Economist, volume 409, number 8864:
      Congratulations on managing to use the phrase “preponderant criterion” in a chart (“On your marks”, November 9th). Was this the work of a kakorrhaphiophobic journalist set a challenge by his colleagues, or simply an example of glossolalia?
  3. (music) A small section of music in a larger piece.
  4. (archaic) A mode or form of speech; diction; expression.
    • Tennyson
      phrases of the hearth
    • Shakespeare
      Thou speak'st / In better phrase and matter than thou didst.

Synonyms

Derived terms

See also

Translations

Verb

phrase (third-person singular simple present phrases, present participle phrasing, simple past and past participle phrased)

  1. (intransitive, music) To perform a passage with the correct phrasing.
  2. (transitive, music) To divide into melodic phrases.
  3. (transitive) To express (an action, thought or idea) by means of words.
    • Shakespeare
      These suns for so they phrase 'em.

Derived terms

Related terms

Translations

Anagrams


French

Pronunciation

  • IPA(key): /fʁaz/

Noun

phrase f (plural phrases)

  1. (false friend) sentence

Anagrams


Latin

Noun

phrase

  1. ablative singular of phrasis

Portuguese

Noun

phrase f (plural phrases)

  1. Obsolete spelling of frase (used in Portugal until September 1911 and died out in Brazil during the 1920s).