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[ak-sen-choo-eyt] /ækˈsɛn tʃuˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), accentuated, accentuating.
to give emphasis or prominence to.
to mark or pronounce with an accent.
Origin of accentuate
1725-35; < Medieval Latin accentuātus intoned (past participle of accentuāre). See accent, -ate1
Related forms
overaccentuate, verb (used with object), overaccentuated, overaccentuating.
reaccentuate, verb (used with object), reaccentuated, reaccentuating.
unaccentuated, adjective
well-accentuated, adjective
Can be confused
accent, accentuate, assent. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for accentuated
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • This feeling had been accentuated by the Ishmaelite life he had led from his puppyhood.

    White Fang Jack London
  • accentuated forms of pathological masochism are, however, rare in women.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • His air of weary indifference was accentuated, I could not help thinking, wilfully.

    Under Western Eyes Joseph Conrad
  • But I recognized that this was only the humming I had heard before, accentuated.

  • Probably it is natural; probably it is accentuated by your residence in feverish cities.

    My New Curate P.A. Sheehan
  • Those features are accentuated and exaggerated by the deformations which are practiced.


    William Graham Sumner
  • The crackle of the legal paper in his reefer pocket only accentuated his gloom.

    Blow The Man Down Holman Day
  • It seemed to her, also, that the grimness in his face was accentuated of late.

    'Me-Smith' Caroline Lockhart
  • A nose and chin, moulded with beauty and precision, accentuated his handsome face.

    The Golden Dog William Kirby
British Dictionary definitions for accentuated


(transitive) to stress or emphasize
Derived Forms
accentuation, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for accentuated



1731, from Medieval Latin accentuatus, past participle of accentuare "to accent," from Latin accentus (see accent (n.)). Originally "to pronounce with an accent;" meaning "emphasize" is recorded from 1865.

You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
Latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

["Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive," 1944, music by Harold Arlen, lyrics by Johnny Mercer]
Related: Accentuated; accentuating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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