verb (used with object), pro·nounced, pro·nounc·ing.
  1. to enunciate or articulate (sounds, words, sentences, etc.).
  2. to utter or sound in a particular manner in speaking: He pronounces his words indistinctly.
  3. to utter or articulate in the accepted or correct manner: I can't pronounce this word.
  4. to declare (a person or thing) to be as specified: She pronounced it the best salmon she had ever tasted.
  5. to utter or deliver formally or solemnly: to pronounce sentence.
  6. to announce authoritatively or officially: The judge pronounced the defendant guilty.
  7. to indicate the pronunciation of (words) by providing a phonetic transcription: This dictionary pronounces most of the words entered.
verb (used without object), pro·nounced, pro·nounc·ing.
  1. to pronounce words, phrases, etc.
  2. to make a statement or assertion, especially an authoritative statement (often followed by on): He was required to pronounce on the findings of his research.
  3. to give an opinion or decision (usually followed by on): to pronounce on an important matter.
  4. to indicate the pronunciation of words: a spelling book that pronounces.

Origin of pronounce

1300–50; Middle English pronouncen < Middle French prononcier < Latin prōnūntiāre to proclaim, announce, recite, utter. See pro-1, announce
Related formspro·nounce·a·ble, adjectivepro·nounce·a·ble·ness, nounpro·nounc·er, nounpre·pro·nounce, verb (used with object), pre·pro·nounced, pre·pro·nounc·ing.un·pro·nounce·a·ble, adjectiveun·pro·nounc·ing, adjective
Can be confusedannounce enunciate pronounce (see synonym study at announce) Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for pronouncing

Contemporary Examples of pronouncing

Historical Examples of pronouncing

  • I cannot do more to-day,' and, pronouncing a general benediction, he returned to the bench.

    Father Sergius

    Leo Tolstoy

  • Oh, how tedious it was, pronouncing word after word, and giving their definitions!

    Pretty Madcap Dorothy

    Laura Jean Libbey

  • Our wireless experts agreed in pronouncing the theory absurd.

    The Destroyer

    Burton Egbert Stevenson

  • I perceived he was incapable of pronouncing a word from the excess of his humiliation.

    Lord Jim

    Joseph Conrad

  • "I am aware whom I am speaking to," added he, pronouncing my name.

British Dictionary definitions for pronouncing


  1. to utter or articulate (a sound or sequence of sounds)
  2. (tr) to utter or articulate (sounds or words) in the correct way
  3. (tr; may take a clause as object) to proclaim officially and solemnlyI now pronounce you man and wife
  4. (when tr, may take a clause as object) to declare as one's judgmentto pronounce the death sentence upon someone
  5. (tr) to make a phonetic transcription of (sounds or words)
Derived Formspronounceable, adjectivepronouncer, noun

Word Origin for pronounce

C14: from Latin prōnuntiāre to announce, from pro- 1 + nuntiāre to announce
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

Word Origin and History for pronouncing



early 14c., "to declare officially;" late 14c., "to speak, utter," from Old French prononcier "declare, speak out, pronounce" (late 13c., Modern French prononcer), from Late Latin pronunciare, from Latin pronuntiare "to proclaim, announce; pronounce, utter," from pro- "forth, out, in public" (see pro-) + nuntiare "announce," from nuntius "messenger" (see nuncio). With reference to the mode of sounding words or languages, it is attested from 1620s (but cf. pronunciation in this sense early 15c.). Related: Pronounced; pronouncing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper