- (in English articulation) a speech sound produced without occluding, diverting, or obstructing the flow of air from the lungs (opposed to consonant).
- (in a syllable) the sound of greatest sonority, as i in grill.Compare consonant(def 1b).
- (in linguistic function) a concept empirically determined as a phonological element in structural contrast with consonant, as the (ē) of be (bē), we (wē), and yeast (yēst).
Origin of vowel
Related formsvow·el·less, adjectivevow·el·like, adjectivevow·el·y, vow·el·ly, adverb
Examples from the Web for vowel
We may note the occasional use of the form til (usually Northern) for to, chiefly before a vowel.
In common with the Slav languages it has a sixth vowel, viz.The Land of the Black Mountain|Reginald Wyon
In poetry the letter A of the article is occasionally elided before a word beginning with a vowel.
There was the faintest hint of Cockney impurity about the vowel sounds.Mortal Coils|Aldous Huxley
When preceded by a Vowel, and followed by a Consonant, it is often suppressed altogether; as, ta mi deanamh I am doing.Elements of Gaelic Grammar|Alexander Stewart