Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.


They rile me—that talk about 'people in the humbler walks of life.'

The laughter and talk were as little subdued as the scheme of the rooms.

I haven't told you yet the reason—a new reason—why you must talk to Avice.

People can talk all they want to about your bein' just a dub—I won't believe 'em.

The music flooded the hall and the room, so that the talk died low.

And he's likely to talk the most execrable slang, or to quote Browning.

He had seen her only at a distance since their talk at Newport.

Sit here, and we'll talk it over sensibly, before you get ready.

Just sit around and talk wise about me all you want to, but watch.

"That's the way to talk, darlint," said his mother, approvingly.


early 13c., talken, probably a diminutive or frequentative form related to Middle English tale "story," ultimately from the same source as tale (cf. hark from hear, stalk from steal) and replacing that word as a verb. East Frisian has talken "to talk, chatter, whisper." Related: Talked; talking.

To talk shop is from 1854. To talk turkey is from 1824, supposedly from an elaborate joke about a swindled Indian. To talk back "answer impudently or rudely" is from 1869. Phrase talking head is by 1966 in the jargon of television production, "an in-tight closeup of a human head talking on television." In reference to a person who habitually appears on television in talking-head shots (usually a news anchor), by 1970. The phrase is used earlier, in reference to the well-known magic trick (e.g. Senior Wences talking head-in-the-box trick on the "Ed Sullivan Show"), and to actual talking heads in mythology around the world (e.g. Orpheus, Bran).


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.