El"o*quence (?), n. [F. 'eloquence, L. eloquentia, fr. eloquens. See Eloquent.]


Fluent, forcible, elegant, and persuasive speech in public; the power of expressing strong emotions in striking and appropriate language either spoken or written, thereby producing conviction or persuasion.

Eloquence is speaking out . . . out of the abundance of the heart. Hare.


Fig.: Whatever produces the effect of moving and persuasive speech.

Silence that spoke and eloquence of eyes. Pope.

The hearts of men are their books; events are their tutors; great actions are their eloquence. Macaulay.


That which is eloquently uttered or written.

O, let my books be then the eloquence And dumb presagers of my speaking breast. Shak.

Syn. -- Oratory; rhetoric.


© Webster 1913.