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Definition of language


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lan·guage  audio  (lnggwj) KEY 

NOUN:
    1. Communication of thoughts and feelings through a system of arbitrary signals, such as voice sounds, gestures, or written symbols.
    2. Such a system including its rules for combining its components, such as words.
    3. Such a system as used by a nation, people, or other distinct community; often contrasted with dialect.
    1. A system of signs, symbols, gestures, or rules used in communicating: the language of algebra.
    2. Computer Science A system of symbols and rules used for communication with or between computers.
  1. Body language; kinesics.
  2. The special vocabulary and usages of a scientific, professional, or other group: "his total mastery of screen languagecamera placement, editingand his handling of actors" (Jack Kroll).
  3. A characteristic style of speech or writing: Shakespearean language.
  4. A particular manner of expression: profane language; persuasive language.
  5. The manner or means of communication between living creatures other than humans: the language of dolphins.
  6. Verbal communication as a subject of study.
  7. The wording of a legal document or statute as distinct from the spirit.

ETYMOLOGY:
Middle English, from Old French langage, from langue, tongue, language, from Latin lingua; see dgh- in Indo-European roots


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