views updated May 18 2018

1. A way of speaking, usually assessed in terms of prevailing standards of PRONUNCIATION and ELOCUTION: clear/slovenly diction.

2. A way or style of using words and phrases, especially in a literary tradition: AUREATE DICTION, POETIC DICTION. The range of vocabulary used by a particular writer: Shakespearian diction; the diction of Robert Burns. See ORTHOEPY, SPEECH.


views updated Jun 27 2018

dic·tion / ˈdikshən/ • n. 1. the choice and use of words and phrases in speech or writing: Wordsworth campaigned against exaggerated poetic diction.2. the style of enunciation in speaking or singing: she began imitating his careful diction.


views updated May 29 2018

diction †word, phrase XV; choice of phraseology, wording XVII. — (O)F. diction or L. dictiō, -ōn- saying, mode of expression, (later) word, f. dict-, pp. stem of dīcere say, rel. to Gr. deiknúnai show, Goth. gateihan announce, OHG. zīhan (G. zeihen), OE. tēon (:- *teohan) accuse, ON. tjá show, tell; see -TION.


views updated Jun 11 2018

diction. Properly, verbal phrasing, or skill in the choice of words, but used in context of singing to denote clear and correct enunciation.