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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce emphasis (audio)

Dictionary definition of emphasis

The special importance or significance given to a particular word, phrase, or aspect of something.
"The coach placed emphasis on the importance of discipline and hard work."

Detailed meaning of emphasis

It is the act of giving prominence to something, making it stand out or be more noticeable. Emphasis can be used in different forms such as speech, writing, visual art, music, and design to draw attention to specific parts of a message or work. It can be achieved through various means, such as tone of voice, word choice, sentence structure, design elements, and color. In speech, emphasis can be given to a particular word or phrase to indicate its importance in the sentence or conversation. In writing, emphasis can be achieved through the use of italics, bold, or capital letters. In art and design, emphasis can be achieved through the use of color, size, shape, and texture. Emphasis is used to draw attention to specific parts of a message or work and to make it stand out or be more noticeable. It can be used to convey a particular emotion or to make a point more clear, and it is an important tool in communication, art, and design.

Example sentences containing emphasis

1. The speaker placed great emphasis on the importance of education.
2. She spoke with emphasis, underlining the gravity of the situation.
3. The teacher's emphasis on critical thinking skills enhanced the students' learning experience.
4. The company's emphasis on innovation led to groundbreaking discoveries.
5. The article lacked emphasis on the ethical implications of the study.
6. The coach put emphasis on teamwork and cooperation during practice.

History and etymology of emphasis

The noun 'emphasis' has its etymological roots in Greek. It is derived from the Greek word 'emphasis,' which means 'a significant or marked thing' or 'a forceful expression.' The term 'emphasis' in English originally referred to the special importance or significance given to a particular word, phrase, or aspect of something to make it stand out and be forcefully expressed. The concept of emphasizing certain elements in language and communication has been central to effective expression and clarity. Thus, the etymology of 'emphasis' underscores its historical association with making something significant or marked, highlighting its role in emphasizing key points in communication, as conveyed by its linguistic heritage.

Quiz: Find the meaning of emphasis

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Further usage examples of emphasis

1. The artist's painting had an emphasis on vibrant colors and bold strokes.
2. The boss's emphasis on punctuality created a culture of timeliness in the workplace.
3. The speaker used hand gestures to add emphasis to their words.
4. The document had emphasis placed on the most important points using bold text.
5. The director's emphasis on authenticity made the film feel genuine.
6. The professor's emphasis on research skills prepared students for their academic careers.
7. The presenter used visual aids to add emphasis and clarity to the information.
8. The manager's emphasis on customer satisfaction resulted in increased sales.
9. The emphasis on environmental sustainability has grown in recent years.
10. The article lacked emphasis on the potential risks associated with the new technology.
11. The coach's emphasis on perseverance and resilience motivated the team to overcome challenges.
12. The book had a strong emphasis on personal development and self-improvement.
13. The speech lacked emphasis on the social implications of the proposed policy.
14. The company's emphasis on work-life balance attracted top talent to their organization.



stress, de-emphasis, neglect, disregard


Prefix em-, SAT 11 (Scholastic Assessment Test), Attention and Focus, Exaggeration and Grandiosity

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