• WordNet 3.6
    • v phrase divide, combine, or mark into phrases "phrase a musical passage"
    • v phrase put into words or an expression "He formulated his concerns to the board of trustees"
    • n phrase dance movements that are linked in a single choreographic sequence
    • n phrase an expression consisting of one or more words forming a grammatical constituent of a sentence
    • n phrase a short musical passage
    • n phrase an expression whose meanings cannot be inferred from the meanings of the words that make it up
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The word "checkmate" in chess comes from the Persian phrase "Shah-Mat," which means the king is dead
    • Phrase A brief expression, sometimes a single word, but usually two or more words forming an expression by themselves, or being a portion of a sentence; as, an adverbial phrase . "“Convey” the wise it call. “Steal!” foh! a fico for the phrase ."
    • Phrase A mode or form of speech; the manner or style in which any one expreses himself; diction; expression. "Phrases of the hearth.""Thou speak'st
      In better phrase and matter than thou didst."
    • Phrase (Mus) A short clause or portion of a period.
    • Phrase A short, pithy expression; especially, one which is often employed; a peculiar or idiomatic turn of speech; as, to err is human .
    • v. t Phrase To express in words, or in peculiar words; to call; to style. "These suns -- for so they phrase 'em."
    • Phrase (Mus) To group notes into phrases; as, he phrases well. See Phrase n., 4.
    • Phrase To use proper or fine phrases.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: The phrase "rule of thumb" is derived from an old English law whichstated that you couldn't beat your wife with anything wider than yourthumb.
    • n phrase A brief expression; more specifically, two or more words expressing what is practically a single notion, and thus performing the office of a single part of speech, or entering with a certain degree of unity into the structure of a sentence.
    • n phrase A peculiar or characteristic expression; a mode of expression peculiar to a language; an idiom.
    • n phrase The manner or style in which a person ex presses himself; diction; phraseology; language; also, an expression, or a form of expression.
    • n phrase In music, a short and somewhat independent division or part of a piece, less complete than a period, and usually closing with a cadence or a half-cadence. A phrase usually includes four or eight measures. The name is also given less technically to any short passage or figure that is performed without pause or break.
    • n phrase In fencing, a period between the beginning and end of a short passage at arms between fencers during which there is no pause, each fencer thrusting and parrying in turn
    • n phrase See the adjectives.
    • n phrase Synonyms See term.
    • phrase To employ peculiar phrases or forms of speech; ex press one's self.
    • phrase In music, to divide a piece in performance into short sections or phrases, so as to bring out the metrical and harmonic form of the whole, and make it musically intelligible; also, to perform any group of tones without pause.
    • phrase To express or designate by a particular phrase or term; call; style.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The phrase "Often a bridesmaid, but never a bride," actually originates from an advertisement for Listerine mouthwash from 1924
    • n Phrase frāz two or more words expressing a single idea by themselves, or showing the manner or style in which a person expresses himself: part of a sentence: a short pithy expression: phraseology:
    • v.t Phrase to express in words: to style
    • n Phrase frāz (mus.) a short clause or portion of a sentence
    • ***


  • Claude M. Bristol
    “These repetitive words and phrases are merely methods of convincing the subconscious mind.”
  • John Bright
    John Bright
    “If this phrase of the balance of power is to be always an argument for war, the pretext for war will never be wanting, and peace can never be secure.”
  • Elizabeth Barrett Browning
    “The Greeks said grandly in their tragic phrase, Let no one be called happy till his death; to which I would add, Let no one, till his death be called unhappy.”
  • C(harles) P(ercy) Snow
    C(harles) P(ercy) Snow
    “The pursuit of happiness is a most ridiculous phrase; if you pursue happiness you'll never find it.”
  • Henry Fielding
    “His designs were strictly honorable, as the phrase is; that is, to rob a lady of her fortune by way of marriage.”
  • Henri B. Stendhal
    “I think no woman I have had ever gave me so sweet a moment, or at so light a price, as the moment I owe to a newly heard musical phrase.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F., fr. L. phrasis, diction, phraseology, Gr. , fr. to speak
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Fr.,—L.,—Gr. phrasisphrazein, to speak.


In literature:

He entered into the game, but, in his own phrase, he always knew what he was about.
"The Squirrel-Cage" by Dorothy Canfield
However, it is not safe to conclude that feelings are not sincere because they are expressed in conventional phrases.
"The King's Mirror" by Anthony Hope
Phrases.+ The educated classes are victims of the phrase.
"Folkways" by William Graham Sumner
Not one utters this phrase without producing a laugh from all within hearing.
"Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds" by Charles Mackay
Paul laughed at the phrase.
"The Opal Serpent" by Fergus Hume
To make them hard to forget, we translate them into words or phrases.
"Assimilative Memory" by Marcus Dwight Larrowe (AKA Prof. A. Loisette)
He searched back, trying to piece together phrases which would indicate the correct answer.
"The Kingdom Round the Corner" by Coningsby Dawson
Macaulay had paid no attention to one highly important phrase.
"The English Utilitarians, Volume II (of 3)" by Leslie Stephen
The repetition of the phrase made him sit straighter.
"The Place of Honeymoons" by Harold MacGrath
Indeed the phrase fits Partenopeus precisely.
"A History of the French Novel, Vol. 1" by George Saintsbury
The first is that the individual units whether ideas, sentences or phrases must be simple.
"Here and Now Story Book" by Lucy Sprague Mitchell
Two of these Phrases make a Phrase Group and two Phrase Groups make a Period.
"Negro Folk Rhymes" by Thomas W. Talley
There's a good deal of loose thinking on that subject, to use one of your own best phrases.
"Otherwise Phyllis" by Meredith Nicholson
In order to get the emphasis upon certain phrases, it is necessary to subordinate other phrases.
"English: Composition and Literature" by W. F. (William Franklin) Webster
But what is the significance of Paul's phrase "with grace"?
"Epistle Sermons, Vol. II" by Martin Luther
A survey of these varied uses reveals the common and fundamental meaning of the phrase.
"Introduction to the Science of Sociology" by Robert E. Park
Remembered phrases like: 'Underbred little clerk!
"The Record of Nicholas Freydon" by A. J. (Alec John) Dawson
He should learn the best usage with regard to special words and phrases.
"Compound Words" by Frederick W. Hamilton
He felt the urgent need of some phrase, to pull the situation out of this pit into which it had fallen.
"The Wife of Sir Isaac Harman" by H. G. (Herbert George) Wells
There have been many merer ones since, unless the phrase has been incorrectly used in recent literature.
"When Ghost Meets Ghost" by William Frend De Morgan

In poetry:

But though she had for every one
The phrase of comfort and the smile,
This shining daughter of the sun
Was dying all the while.
"In Memoriam~ -- Alice Fane Gunn Stenhouse" by Henry Kendall
On your sealed lip, the unfinished phrase
With trembling agony we trace,
And shudder, as with stony gaze
Ye shut us from your fond embrace.
"Sudden Death" by Lydia Howard Huntley Sigourney
I wadna bid ye welcome here
In Southern phrase; I wadna speir
What was the erran' brocht ye here;
But soul, and heart, and tongue shall cheer,
And welcome Garibaldi!
"Auld Scotland's Welcome To Garibaldi" by Janet Hamilton
These things were mine, and they were real for me
As lips and darling eyes and a warm breast:
For I could love a phrase, a melody,
Like a fair woman, worshipped and possessed.
"Poem" by Aldous Huxley
Nay, let not fancies, born of old beliefs,
Play with the heart-beats that are throbbing still,
And waste their outworn phrases on the griefs,
The silent griefs that words can only chill.
"In Memory Of John Greenleaf Whittier" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
O Fame!—if I e'er took delight in thy praises,
'Twas less for the sake of thy high-sounding phrases,
Than to see the bright eyes of the dear one discover
She thought that I was not unworthy to love her.
"Stanzas Written On The Road Between Florence And Pisa" by Lord George Gordon Byron

In news:

Some phrases are indelibly linked with certain characters.
Ever heard the phrase, "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas".
The Top Five Holiday Phrases from Made-Up Languages.
I keep getting common phrases wrong.
P erhaps one of the most over-used and abused phrases we've been hearing in the past 2 years is, "the new economy".
There are two likely sources as to how this phrase got started.
New catch phrase conveys a sense of self-righteousness and specificity.
It is a cliche, yet sometimes an unlikely combination of war and a witness illustrates the hallowed truth that lurks behind a hollow phrase.
You know, fathers are always full of sage advice and catchy phrases.
If you think the phrase "Empirical Labs EL8X Distressor with British Mod Single Channel Rackmount Compressor/Limiter" sounds like a foreign language, you are not alone.
Just hearing the phrase "holiday home," made Decathlon V visitors smile.
One clunky phrasing that is understandable but not standard: "How do we call it in English".
2009 brought us new catch phrases — and many cautionary tales.
Tiger Woods' tally of known mistresses entered the double digits in December, including one who said they enjoyed "crazy Ambien sex," causing the phrase to become a top search term.
Here are some phrases that leave people with a bad taste in their mouths.

In science:

Schaper’s argument is a translation of the Jantzen sum formula for the Weyl modules of the general linear group (phrased in terms of the dot action of the symmetric group upon the weight lattice of GLn ), into the combinatorial language of the symmetric group.
The representation theory of the Ariki-Koike and cyclotomic q-Schur algebras
Learning User Information Interests Through Extraction of Semantically Significant Phrases.
A Connection-Centric Survey of Recommender Systems Research
The hypothesis can be re-phrased as ∀g ∈ A, φ(g) ≤ δ |A|.
Towards a practical, theoretically sound algorithm for random generation in finite groups
Clearly, W is a very valuable module! This can be phrased quite well in terms of tilting and cotilting theory.
Infinite dimensional representations of canonical algebras
Or phrased another way, the cluster abundance is a sensitive probe of the normalization of the M–T relation.
Weak Lensing as a Calibrator of the Cluster Mass-Temperature Relation
The Cheeger-Gromov theory may be viewed as a vast generalization of the basic features of Teichm¨uller theory to higher dimensions and variable curvature, (although it was not originally phrased in this way).
Cheeger-Gromov Theory and Applications to General Relativity
Key words and phrases. convexity, symmetric, hermitian, orthogonally invariant.
Another Simple Proof of a Theorem of Chandler Davis
Key words and phrases: Coassociative coalgebra, Markov L-coalgebra, quantum graphs, De Bruijn graphs, periodic orbits, chaotic map, random walks, Hadamard walk.
Coassociative grammar, periodic orbits and quantum random walk over Z
Key words and Phrases: Random walk in random scenery.
Large deviations for Brownian motion in a random scenery
Key words and phrases. quantization, spin, odd and even variables, superanalysis, matrix-like phase, Feynman’s problem.
An extension of the method of characteristic to a system of Partial Differential Operators-- an application to the Weyl equation with external field by "Super Hamiltonian path-integral method"
Keywords and Phrases: C ∗ -algebras, von Neumann algebras, Random matrices, Free probability, Invariant subspaces.
Random matrices, free probability and the invariant subspace problem relative to a von Neumann Algebra
Keywords and Phrases: Random matrices, Toeplitz determinants, Determinantal processes, Random Growth, Random permutations.
Toeplitz determinants, random growth and determinantal processes
Key Words and Phrases: permutation, shift cursor algorithm, level algorithm.
Permutation Generation: Two New Permutation Algorithms
Key words and phrases. C ∗ -algebras, K-theory, classification, covering dimension.
On topologically finite-dimensional simple C*-algebras
The noun phrase (
A Flexible Pragmatics-driven Language Generator for Animated Agents