- (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).
- vowel gradation,
- vowel harmony,
- vowel mutation,
- vowel point,
- vowel rhyme
Origin of vowel
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
Word Origin for vowel
c.1300, from Old French vouel, from Latin vocalis, in littera vocalis, literally "vocal letter," from vox (genitive vocis) "voice" (see voice (n.)). Vowel shift in reference to the pronunciation change between Middle and Modern English is attested from 1909. The Hawaiian word hooiaioia, meaning "certified," has the most consecutive vowels of any word in current human speech; the English record-holder is queueing.