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v. Archaic
A past tense of speak.


archaic or dialect a past tense of speak



v. spoke, spo•ken, speak•ing. v.i.
1. to utter words or articulate sounds with the ordinary voice; talk.
2. to communicate vocally; mention.
3. to converse.
4. to deliver an address, discourse, etc.
5. to make a statement in written or printed words.
6. to communicate, signify, or disclose by any means.
7. to emit a sound, as a musical instrument; make a noise or report.
8. to utter vocally and articulately.
9. to express or make known with the voice.
10. to declare in writing or printing, or by any means of communication.
11. to use, or be able to use, in oral utterance: to speak French.
12. to communicate with (a passing vessel) at sea, as by voice or signal.
13. Archaic. to speak to or with.
14. speak for, to speak in behalf of.
15. speak out, to express one's opinion openly and unreservedly.
16. speak up,
a. to speak loud enough to be heard.
b. to speak out.
1. so to speak, figuratively speaking: We lost our shirt, so to speak.
2. speak well for, to be an indication or reflection of (something commendable).
3. to speak of, worth mentioning: no debts to speak of.
[before 900; Middle English speken, Old English specan, variant of sprecan, c. Old Frisian spreka, Old Saxon sprekan, Old High German sprehhan]
speak′a•ble, adj.


a combining form extracted from newspeak, used in the formation of compound words that denote the vocabulary of a field, person, era, etc.: adspeak; artspeak; futurespeak.
References in classic literature ?
When we last spake together," said Hester, "now seven years ago, it was your pleasure to extort a promise of secrecy as touching the former relation betwixt yourself and me.
But again he leaned over towards the people, and bowing his head lowly, with an aspect of the deepest yet manliest humility, he spake these words: Shipmates, God has laid but one hand upon you; both his hands press upon me.
Yet the voice spake true; for scarce had he pushed from the ship, when numbers of sharks, seemingly rising from out the dark waters beneath the hull, maliciously snapped at the blades of the oars, every time they dipped in the water; and in this way accompanied the boat with their bites.
Lo, said Merlin, yonder is that sword that I spake of.
Go round by th' end o' t' laith, if ye went to spake to him.
So spake th' Apostate Angel, though in pain, Vaunting aloud, but rackt with deep despare: And him thus answer'd soon his bold Compeer.
Thus spake Prince John, wilfully forgetting, that of all the sons of Henry the Second, though no one was free from the charge, he himself had been most distinguished for rebellion and ingratitude to his father.
After they had traveled thus for a time Robin Hood spake.
Then Robin turned to the Bishop of Hereford and said, "Was this the man who spake so boldly to Your Lordship?
So spake the Eternal Father, and all Heaven Admiring stood a space; then into hymns Burst forth, and in celestial measures moved, Circling the throne and singing, while the hand Sung with the voice, and this the argument:-- "Victory and triumph to the Son of God, Now entering his great duel, not of arms, But to vanquish by wisdom hellish wiles
But at last his heart changed,--and rising one morning with the rosy dawn, he went before the sun, and spake thus unto it:
The saint laughed at Zarathustra, and spake thus: "Then see to it that they accept thy treasures