Em"pha*sis (?), n.; pl. Emphases (#). [L., fr. Gr. significance, force of expression, fr. to show in, indicate; in + to show. See In, and Phase.]

1. Rhet.

A particular stress of utterance, or force of voice, given in reading and speaking to one or more words whose signification the speaker intends to impress specially upon his audience.

The province of emphasis is so much more important than accent, that the customary seat of the latter is changed, when the claims of emphasis require it. E. Porter.


A peculiar impressiveness of expression or weight of thought; vivid representation, enforcing assent; as, to dwell on a subject with great emphasis.

External objects stand before us . . . in all the life and emphasis of extension, figure, and color. Sir W. Hamilton.


© Webster 1913.