Definition - A unit of speech spoken without interruption. It usually consists of a vowel either preceded by or followed by (or both) a consonant.

Example -
The word candor has two syllables: can and dor.

Etymology -
The word derives via French and Latin from the Greek syllabe, several sounds or letters taken together (from syn, together + lambanein, to take; thus, etymology-wise, a syllable is a "taking together" of sounds).

Oxford English Dictionary -
Its first citation is from circa 1384:
"Though somme vers fayle in A sillable."
(Chaucer H. Fame iii. 8 )


1. I use to teach my kids to count the syllables by clapping. At a teacher's workshop, I learned to have them count how many times the jaw drops to determine the number of syllables. This is much more obvious.
(lizardtale.547 at

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