Definitions for: Diction


[n] the articulation of speech regarded from the point of view of its intelligibility to the audience
[n] the manner in which something is expressed in words; "use concise military verbiage"- G.S.Patton



Webster (1913) Definition: Dic"tion, n. [L. dicto a saying, a word, fr. dicere,
dictum, to say; akin to dicare to proclaim, and to E. teach,
token: cf. F. diction. See Teach, and cf. Benison,
Dedicate, Index, Judge, Preach, Vengeance.]
Choice of words for the expression of ideas; the
construction, disposition, and application of words in
discourse, with regard to clearness, accuracy, variety, etc.;
mode of expression; language; as, the diction of Chaucer's
poems.

His diction blazes up into a sudden explosion of
prophetic grandeur. --De Quincey.

Syn: Diction, Style, Phraseology.

Usage: Style relates both to language and thought; diction,
to language only; phraseology, to the mechanical
structure of sentences, or the mode in which they are
phrased. The style of Burke was enriched with all the
higher graces of composition; his diction was varied
and copious; his phraseology, at times, was careless
and cumbersome. ``Diction is a general term applicable
alike to a single sentence or a connected composition.
Errors in grammar, false construction, a confused
disposition of words, or an improper application of
them, constitute bad diction; but the niceties, the
elegancies, the peculiarities, and the beauties of
composition, which mark the genius and talent of the
writer, are what is comprehended under the name of
style.'' --Crabb.

Synonyms: choice of words, enunciation, phraseology, phrasing, verbiage, wording

See Also: articulation, expression, formulation, mot juste, mumbling, verbalisation, verbalization

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