speech - definition in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online (US)

Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “speech”

See all translations

speech

noun uk   us   /spiːtʃ/

speech noun (SAY WORDS)

B1 [U] the ability to talk, the activity of talking, or a piece of spoken language: Children usually develop speech in the second year of life. People who suffer a stroke may experience a loss of speech. [U] the way a person talks: His speech was slurred and I thought he was drunk.B1 [U] the language used when talking: Some expressions are used more in speech than in writing. [C] a set of words spoken in a play: Do you know the words to Hamlet's famous speech at the beginning of Act III?
More examples

speech noun (FORMAL TALK)

B2 [C] a formal talk given usually to a large number of people on a special occasion: I had to give/make a speech at my brother's wedding. The Governor of New York delivered a rousing speech to the national convention. He gave the after-dinner speech (= a talk given after a formal evening meal at which a large number of people are present). Did you hear her acceptance speech at the Oscars ceremony?
See also
More examples
(Definition of speech from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of speech?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “speech” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

cost/charge the earth

to cost, charge, etc. a lot of money

Word of the Day

The language of elections

by Liz Walter,
April 22, 2015
On May 7th, citizens of the UK will be going to the polls (having an election) to decide who will form the next government. This kind of election is known as a general election. The country is divided into 650 areas, called constituencies. Each constituency elects a member of parliament (MP) to

Read More 

dumbwalking noun

April 20, 2015
walking slowly, without paying attention to the world around you because you are consulting a smartphone He told me dumbwalking probably wouldn’t be a long-term problem.

Read More