- (in English articulation) a speech sound produced by occluding with or without releasing (p, b; t, d; k, g), diverting (m, n, ng), or obstructing (f, v; s, z, etc.) the flow of air from the lungs (opposed to vowel).
- (in a syllable) any sound other than the sound of greatest sonority in the syllable, as b, r, and g in brig (opposed to sonant).Compare vowel(def 1b).
- (in linguistic function) a concept empirically determined as a phonological element in structural contrast with vowel, as the b of be, the w of we, the y, s, and t of yeast, etc.
- a letter that usually represents a consonant sound.
Origin of consonant
Synonyms for consonantSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Antonyms for consonant
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Related Words for consonantlylikewise, comparatively, equally, evenly, similarly, uniformly, analogously, comparably, consonantly, correspondingly, equivalently, identically
Examples from the Web for consonantly
Historical Examples of consonantly
"They would have socked it to him, I reckon," Jimmy exclaimed, consonantly.The Entailed Hat
George Alfred Townsend
- a speech sound or letter of the alphabet other than a vowel; a stop, fricative, or continuant
- (postpositive; foll by with or to) consistent; in agreement
- harmonious in tone or sound
- music characterized by the presence of a consonance
- being or relating to a consonant
Word Origin for consonant
C14: from Latin consonāns, from consonāre to sound at the same time, be in harmony, from sonāre to sound
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
early 15c., from Old French consonant (13c.), from Latin consonantem (nominative consonans), present participle of consonare (see consonant (n.)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper