• A Tone of Voice That Meant Trouble 138
    A Tone of Voice That Meant Trouble 138
  • WordNet 3.6
    • v tone give a healthy elasticity to "Let's tone our muscles"
    • v tone change to a color image "tone a photographic image"
    • v tone change the color or tone of "tone a negative"
    • v tone vary the pitch of one's speech
    • v tone utter monotonously and repetitively and rhythmically "The students chanted the same slogan over and over again"
    • n tone a quality of a given color that differs slightly from another color "after several trials he mixed the shade of pink that she wanted"
    • n tone (linguistics) a pitch or change in pitch of the voice that serves to distinguish words in tonal languages "the Beijing dialect uses four tones"
    • n tone (music) the distinctive property of a complex sound (a voice or noise or musical sound) "the timbre of her soprano was rich and lovely","the muffled tones of the broken bell summoned them to meet"
    • n tone the quality of something (an act or a piece of writing) that reveals the attitudes and presuppositions of the author "the general tone of articles appearing in the newspapers is that the government should withdraw","from the tone of her behavior I gathered that I had outstayed my welcome"
    • n tone a steady sound without overtones "they tested his hearing with pure tones of different frequencies"
    • n tone a musical interval of two semitones
    • n tone a notation representing the pitch and duration of a musical sound "the singer held the note too long"
    • n tone the quality of a person's voice "he began in a conversational tone","he spoke in a nervous tone of voice"
    • n tone the general atmosphere of a place or situation and the effect that it has on people "the feel of the city excited him","a clergyman improved the tone of the meeting","it had the smell of treason"
    • n tone the elastic tension of living muscles, arteries, etc. that facilitate response to stimuli "the doctor tested my tonicity"
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: Used in art the word "sfumato" refers to the subtle blending of an outline by gradually blending one tone into another
    • Tone (Mus) A mode or tune or plain chant; as, the Gregorian tones .
    • Tone (Mus) A sound considered as to pitch; as, the seven tones of the octave; she has good high tones.
    • Tone A whining style of speaking; a kind of mournful or artificial strain of voice; an affected speaking with a measured rhythm ahd a regular rise and fall of the voice; as, children often read with a tone .
    • Tone (Rhet) Accent, or inflection or modulation of the voice, as adapted to express emotion or passion. "Eager his tone , and ardent were his eyes."
    • Tone Color quality proper; -- called also hue. Also, a gradation of color, either a hue, or a tint or shade. "She was dressed in a soft cloth of a gray tone ."
    • Tone General or prevailing character or style, as of morals, manners, or sentiment, in reference to a scale of high and low; as, a low tone of morals; a tone of elevated sentiment; a courtly tone of manners.
    • Tone (Physiol) Quality, with respect to attendant feeling; the more or less variable complex of emotion accompanying and characterizing a sensation or a conceptual state; as, feeling tone; color tone .
    • Tone Sound, or the character of a sound, or a sound considered as of this or that character; as, a low, high, loud, grave, acute, sweet, or harsh tone . "Harmony divine] smooths her charming tones .""Tones that with seraph hymns might blend."
    • Tone State of mind; temper; mood. "The strange situation I am in and the melancholy state of public affairs, . . . drag the mind down . . . from a philosophical tone or temper, to the drudgery of private and public business.""Their tone was dissatisfied, almost menacing."
    • Tone Tenor; character; spirit; drift; as, the tone of his remarks was commendatory.
    • Tone (Med) That state of a body, or of any of its organs or parts, in which the animal functions are healthy and performed with due vigor.
    • Tone (Plant Physiol) The condition of normal balance of a healthy plant in its relations to light, heat, and moisture.
    • Tone The general effect of a picture produced by the combination of light and shade, together with color in the case of a painting; -- commonly used in a favorable sense; as, this picture has tone .
    • Tone (Mus) The larger kind of interval between contiguous sounds in the diatonic scale, the smaller being called a semitone as, a whole tone too flat; raise it a tone.
    • Tone (Mus) The peculiar quality of sound in any voice or instrument; as, a rich tone a reedy tone .
    • Tone (Photog) To bring, as a print, to a certain required shade of color, as by chemical treatment.
    • Tone To give tone, or a particular tone, to; to tune. See Tune v. t.
    • Tone To utter with an affected tone.
    • Tone (Physiol) Tonicity; as, arterial tone .
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
  • Interesting fact: American car horns beep in the tone of F.
    • n tone In philology, a distinctive quality or pitch forming in some languages a fixed feature of the pronunciation of words, as in Chinese, Swedish, etc. Such tones in Chinese (called sheng) serve to distinguish, theoretically, eight phases of a given monosyllable. These tones have been supposed to represent a former chanting or singsong utterance; but they represent, rather, the faint phonetic relics of otherwise vanished syllables, kept in the process of monosyllabizing because they serve to differentiate what would otherwise be indistinguishable homonyms. So in Russian and French a vanished final vowel ('silent e') has left a phonetic effect upon the preceding consonant. In Chinese these reliquial effects have come to be conventionally regulated into a kind of musical system similar to that which in English utterance is purely rhetorical and therefore variable.
    • n tone In telephonic testing, the humming noise produced by the introduction of an alternating or rapidly alternating current into the line
    • tone In printing, to grade or soften with a graver, or roulette, or by etching certain parts (especially the edges) of (an illustration, usually an electrotype), as an aid in reducing the quantity of ink caused by pressure in printing.
    • n tone Any sound considered with reference to its acuteness or gravity (pitch), openness, dullness, purity, sweetness, harshness, or the like (quality or timbre), or loudness or softness (strength or volume).
    • n tone Specifically In musical acoustics, a sound having definiteness and continuity enough so that its pitch, force, and quality may be readily estimated by the ear, and so that it may be employed in musical relations; musical sound: opposed to noise. See sound. Most tones are plainly composite, consisting of several relatively simple constituents called partial tones. Of these the lowest in pitch is usually the most prominent, and hence is called the principal or fundamental tone, while the others are called accessory tones, overtones, or harmonics (see harmonic, n., 1). The difference in timbre between tones of different voices or instruments is due to differences in the number and relative force of their partial tones. (See timbre.) When two tones are sounded together, they frequently generate resultant tones, which are further divided into differential and summational tones. See resultant.
    • n tone Modulation, inflection, or accent of the voice, as adapted to express sentiment, emotion, or passion.
    • n tone An affected or artificial style of intonation in speaking or reading; a sing-song or measured rhythmical manner of speaking.
    • n tone In music, one of the larger intervals of a diatonic series or scale; a whole step or “whole tone” as distinguished from a half-step or semitone. The standard tones are the larger and the smaller major seconds, acoustically represented by the ratios 8:9 and 9:10 respectively. The compromise intervals by which these intervals are rendered in the system of equal temperament are also called tones or whole steps.
    • n tone In Gregorian music, a melody or tune traditionally associated with a particular text; an ancient psalm-tune. See chant . The origin of these old melodies is disputed. They may have been composed in the early Christian period, but it is more likely that they were imitated either from ancient Greek melodies or from the songs of the ancient Hebrews. In the latter case, it is possible that they preserve some of the musical usages of the temple music.
    • n tone In medicine, the state of tension or firmness proper to the tissues of the body; the state in which all the parts and organs have due tension or are well strung; the strength and activity of the organs on which healthy functions depend; hence, that state of the body in which all the animal functions are performed with healthy vigor. See tonicity.
    • n tone State or temper of mind; mood.
    • n tone Tenor; spirit; strain; quality; specifically, the general or prevailing character or style, as of morals, manners, or sentiments, especially a marked degree of such style.
    • n tone In painting, the prevailing effect of color, or the general effect produced by the management of light and shade in a picture: as, dark, light, or silvery tone. In color, tone is dependent upon quality—namely, that part of the luminosity or transparency of an object which is due partly to its local tint and partly to the light which falls upon it. In general, tone depends upon the harmonious relation of objects in shadow to the principal light. We speak of a deep tone, a rich tone, a vigorous or firm tone, a delicate tone, meaning the mode in which by harmonized relations rounded masses are made more or less distinct, and objects more or less prominent.
    • n tone A quality of color; a tint; a shade.
    • n tone In chromatics, see the first quotation.
    • n tone In photography, the color of a finished positive picture, in many processes due to a chemical operation supplementary to those of producing and fixing the picture: as, a print of a brown, gray, or black tone; also, sometimes, the color of the film of a negative, etc.
    • n tone In grammar, syllabic accent; stress of voice on one of the syllables of a word.
    • n tone In playing on musical instruments of the stringed and brass wind groups, a tone produced from an open string or without the use of valves or other modifiers of the pitch. Opposed to stopped tone.
    • n tone Synonyms Noise, etc. See sound.
    • tone To tune. See tune.
    • tone To utter in an affected or drawling tone.
    • tone To give tone or quality to, in respect either to sound or to color or tint.
    • tone In photography, to alter the color, as of a picture in finishing it, to give it greater brilliancy or a more agreeable tint. This is performed by the action of a chemical solution of which the chief agent, in the case of ordinary silver prints on paper, is usually clilorid of gold, and changes the natural reddish hue to a deeper brown, or to black or gray, etc., as desired.
    • tone To give a more subdued tone to; reduce or moderate the characteristic opinions or expressions of; render less confident, pronounced, or decided; soften.
    • tone To take on a particular tone; specifically, to assume color or tint.
    • tone To harmonize in tone, color, or tint.
    • tone One: originally and usually preceded by the, and usually followed by the tother. See etymology. Compare tother.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
  • Interesting fact: The clock tower that supports the famous clock 'Big Ben' at the house of parliament in London, is 320 feet high. The bell from which the clock get it's name, weighs 13.5 tones.
    • n Tone tōn the character of a sound: quality of the voice: harmony of the colours of a painting, also its characteristic or prevailing effect as due to the management of chiaroscuro and to the effect of light upon the quality of colour: :
    • v.t Tone to utter with an affected tone: to intone, to utter in a drawling way: to give tone or quality to, in respect either of sound or colour: to alter or modify the colour
    • n Tone tōn (phot.) the shade or colour of a finished positive picture
    • n Tone tōn (gram.) syllabic stress, special accent given to a syllable: character or style: state of mind: mood: a healthy state of the body
    • ***


  • Samuel Taylor Coleridge
    “Some men are like musical glasses; to produce their finest tones you must keep them wet.”
  • Samuel Butler
    “We are not won by arguments that we can analyze, but by tone and temper; by the manner, which is the man himself.”
  • James F. Cooper
    “Candor is a proof of both a just frame of mind, and of a good tone of breeding. It is a quality that belongs equally to the honest man and to the gentleman.”
  • Source Unknown
    Source Unknown
    “Get in touch with the way the other person feels. Feelings are 55% body language, 38% tone and 7% words.”
  • Lord Chesterfield
    “Take the tone of the company you are in.”
  • W. S. Gilbert
    “The idiot who praises, with enthusiastic tone, All centuries but this, and every country but his own.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. ton, L. tonus, a sound, tone, fr. Gr. to`nos a stretching, straining, raising of the voice, pitch, accent, measure or meter, in pl., modes or keys differing in pitch; akin to tei`nein to stretch or strain. See Thin, and cf. Monotonous Thunder Ton fashion, Tune
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
L. tonus—Gr. tonos, a sound—teinō, to stretch.


In literature:

Sir Hilary drew Foyle a little aside, and they conversed in low tones.
"The Grell Mystery" by Frank Froest
The tones are tranquil, as though the two men were now quietly conversing.
"The Death Shot" by Mayne Reid
Some one had joined her; and I could hear voices in conversation; her own contrasting with the harsher tones of a man.
"The War Trail" by Mayne Reid
Only his tone offended me.
"Chance" by Joseph Conrad
She answered quickly, but with some nervousness of tone.
"A True Friend" by Adeline Sergeant
When the desired tone is reached, remove the print from the toning solution and wash quickly and well in running water for fifteen minutes.
"Bromide Printing and Enlarging" by John A. Tennant
This tone of personal comment and admonition was very rare with Mr. Grey.
"Robert Elsmere" by Mrs. Humphry Ward
Honey Tone de uplifteh!
"Lady Luck" by Hugh Wiley
Her father knew what the tone meant, and looked up for the first time.
"Casa Braccio, Volumes 1 and 2 (of 2)" by F. Marion Crawford
Her whole conduct and tone had been modest and ladylike.
"Anna the Adventuress" by E. Phillips Oppenheim

In poetry:

If you would hear this music
And be charmed by its tone,
Attune your heart to harmony,
For the music is its own.
"Heartstrings" by Jared Barhite
But in my heart are ringing
Tones of a lofty song;
A voice that I know, is singing,
And my heart all night must long.
"Picture Songs" by George MacDonald
If I have durst to raise thy tone
To sing a theme too high,
Thou, thou must bear the sin alone,
O harp, not I, not I.
"To My Lyre" by James Avis Bartley
O ye words that sound so hollow
As I now recall your tone!
What are ye but empty echoes
Of a passion crushed and gone?
"The Buried Flower" by William Edmondstoune Aytoun
The "little language" of a look,
A tone, a turn, a touch,
An eloquence that while it speaketh
Nothing, yet sayeth much.
"A Woman's Mood" by Elizabeth Stuart Phelps Ward
Yet, through the hum of torrent lone,
And brooding mountain-bee,
There sobs I know not what ground-tone
Of human agony.
"Stanzas In Memory Of The Author Of 'Obermann'" by Matthew Arnold

In news:

It will help you tone core muscles.
9, 2008) There has been a shift In the way Americans think about food over the past two decades, a change in tone.
Any pub worth its stout can pour you a Black and Tan , the classic two-toned beer elixir.
Shipp's droning The Phantom of the Opera -styled Farfisa organ tones open this otherworldly jam, a continuous 38-minute suite of improvised music.
The 'Give Your Heart a Break' singer was photographed with tri-toned hair.
Tone Up on the Treadmill.
It's toned, it's firm, and it's on glorious display at the Yoga studio in your town.
At last, Ryan shows some bravado -- but his tone may have betrayed his woes on O.
Toning down technology and one-upping fair trade.
Potential in 'Hope Springs' dissolves into tone- deafness .
Then again, maybe Romney is just tone- deaf .
As usual, 90210's AnnaLynne McCord had all eyes on her in this flesh toned mini.
Marco Islander Susan Ediss uses subdued tones and pastels in her master bedroom.
The Secret to Toned Arms.
Peachy-pink hues flatter all skin tones.

In science:

To prove the first, we define a map Φ : ΞA → S tone(B ).
Integration in valued fields
Sound preferences could include setting the volume, tone, frequency, etc.
Human Information Processing with the Personal Memex
The mutual information on each tone is determined by the chosen signal distribution.
Transmit Diversity v. Spatial Multiplexing in Modern MIMO Systems
The variability of the channel response over the multiple tones and H-ARQ rounds of a coded block is illustrated in Fig. 1.
Transmit Diversity v. Spatial Multiplexing in Modern MIMO Systems
The circles indicate the locations of the 12 tones that map to a given resource block. (b) TU channel fading realization, for a given tone, over 30 ms.
Transmit Diversity v. Spatial Multiplexing in Modern MIMO Systems