Definition of declamation in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌdekləˈmāSHən/


1The action or art of declaiming: Shakespearean declamation declamations of patriotism
More example sentences
  • By now, a type of free-style declamation known as ‘recitative’ (literally ‘speech-song’) was being used to hurtle the drama forward.
  • Motivation - particularly of the antagonist, Von Doom - was likewise absent, or, where it was articulated, it was in an irritating expository declamation by one of the primary characters on behalf of another.
  • This remained the case through to William Beveridge, whose declamation of the five evils of ‘Want, Disease, Ignorance, Squalor and Idleness’ would be almost unthinkable now.
1.1A rhetorical exercise or set speech.
Example sentences
  • His Speech Day declamations, which took place on 5 July 1804, 6 June 1805, and 4 July 1805, played an important role in his self-fashioning.
1.2Forthright or distinct projection of words set to music: a soprano soloist with wonderfully clear declamation
More example sentences
  • Martin clearly shares an approach toward choral music and choral declamation with Kodály, especially in the Brigand Songs, although you'd never mistake one for the other.
  • Even in early motets such as the popular Ave Maria virgo serena Josquin shows true independence of mind, strongly innovatory tendencies, and a concern for the clear, rhetorical declamation of the words.
  • Instinctively he expressed vocal art through the ‘voice’ of the piano and stylised the vocal techniques of declamation, the arc-shaped fioriture and portamento.


Late Middle English (in the sense 'a set speech'): from Latin declamatio(n-), from the verb declamare (see declaim).

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Syllabification: dec·la·ma·tion

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