views updated May 18 2018

talk / tôk/ • v. [intr.] speak in order to give information or express ideas or feelings; converse or communicate by spoken words: the two men talked we'd sit and talk about jazz | it was no use talking to Anthony | [tr.] you're talking rubbish. ∎  have the power of speech: he can talk as well as you or I can. ∎  discuss personal or intimate feelings: we need to talk, Maggie. ∎  have formal dealings or discussions; negotiate: they won't talk to the regime that killed their families. ∎  (talk something over/through) discuss something thoroughly. ∎  (talk at) address (someone) in a hectoring or self-important way without listening to their replies: he never talked at you. ∎  (talk to) reprimand or scold (someone): someone will have to talk to Lily. ∎  [tr.] (be talking) inf. used to emphasize the seriousness, importance, or extent of the thing one is mentioning or in the process of discussing: we're talking big money. ∎  [tr.] use (a particular language) in speech: we were talking German. ∎  [tr.] persuade or cause (someone) to do something by talking: don't try to talk me into acting as a go-between. ∎  reveal secret or confidential information; betray secrets. ∎  gossip: you'll have the whole school talking.• n. conversation; discussion: there was a slight but noticeable lull in the talk. ∎  a period of conversation or discussion, esp. a relatively serious one: my mother had a talk with Louis. ∎  an informal address or lecture. ∎  rumor, gossip, or speculation: there is talk of an armistice. ∎  empty promises or boasting: he's all talk. ∎  (the talk of) a current subject of widespread gossip or speculation in (a particular place): within days I was the talk of the town. ∎  (talks) formal discussions or negotiations over a period: peace talks.PHRASES: don't talk to me about —— inf. said in protest when someone introduces a subject of which the speaker has had bitter personal experience.know what one is talking about be expert or authoritative on a specified subject.look who's talkinganother way of saying you shouldn't you're talkingsee shouldn't (or should) (or chiefly Brit. can't or can) talk inf. used to convey that a criticism made applies equally well to the person who has made it: “He'd chase anything in a skirt!” “You shouldn't talk!”talk a blue streaksee about ——! inf. used to emphasize that something is an extreme or striking example of a particular situation, state, or experience: Talk about hangovers! But aching head or not we were getting big inf. talk boastfully or dirtysee nineteen to the dozensee of the devilsee sense into persuade (someone) to behave more shopsee through one's hat (or ass or backside or Brit. arse) inf. talk foolishly, wildly, or turkeysee turkey.PHRASAL VERBS: talk back reply defiantly or down to speak patronizingly or condescendingly someone around (or Brit. round) bring someone to a particular point of view by someone through enable someone to perform (a task) by giving them continuous someone/something up (or down) discuss someone or something in a way that makes them seem more (or less) interesting or attractive.DERIVATIVES: talk·er n.


views updated May 11 2018

1. A way of talking or speaking, usually embracing what one talks about: TEACHER TALK the usage of teachers in the classroom; chalk and talk an informal term for teaching methods that do not use complex technology; small talk trivial news and gossip. The term is informal in such forms as country talk and local talk, and pejorative in such forms as nigger talk.

2. A VARIETY or DIALECT, especially if not taken too seriously or low in prestige: Bungo Talk ‘country bumpkin’ speech in Jamaica; Creole Talk of Trinidad and Tobago (title of a book, 1980). This sense has long been associated with English-based PIDGINS and CREOLES; the word has been adopted and adapted, usually in the written form tok, in various names, such as KAMTOK in Cameroon and TOK PISIN in Papua New Guinea. It may also occur in such pidgin and creole usages as tumantok (‘two-man talk’) a tête-à-tête.

3. Sound that approximates to SPEECH, whether produced by an animal, an infant, or a machine: BABY TALK. Compare -ESE, LINGO, -SPEAK. See AKU, DOUBLE TALK, FOREIGNER TALK, RASTA TALK, TECHNOBABBLE.


views updated Jun 11 2018

talk talk is cheap proverbial saying, mid 19th century meaning that it is easier to say than to do something; an early 17th century source has, ‘words are but words, and pay not what men owe’. Compare actions speak louder than words.
talk of the Devil, and he is bound to appear proverbial saying, mid 17th century, meaning that to speak of the Devil may be to invite his presence; often abbreviated to talk of the Devil, and used when a person just spoken of is seen.

See also walk the walk and talk the talk.


views updated Jun 27 2018

Talk ★★ 1994

Sharp conversation between two thirtysomething women as they wander around the streets of Sydney. Stephanie (Milliken) and Julia (Longley) are collaborators on graphic novels—Stephanie's single and adventurous while Julia is seemingly settled in the country with her lover and child. As they talk, the women learn that both their lives have conflicts. Fantasy sequences, which slow the story down, find the women stepping into their own comic-book adventures. 86m/C VHS . AU Victoria Longley, Angie Milliken, Richard Roxburgh, Jacqueline McKenzie, John Jarratt; D: Susan Lambert; W: Jan Cornall; C: Ron Hagen; M: John Clifford White.


views updated May 23 2018

talk vb. XIII. ME. talk(i)en, f. the base *tal- of TALE, TELL.
Hence talk sb., talkative XV.