Vow·el n. Phon. A vocal, or sometimes a whispered, sound modified by resonance in the oral passage, the peculiar resonance in each case giving to each several vowel its distinctive character or quality as a sound of speech; -- distinguished from a consonant in that the latter, whether made with or without vocality, derives its character in every case from some kind of obstructive action by the mouth organs. Also, a letter or character which represents such a sound. See Guide to Pronunciation, §§ 5, 146-149.
Note: ☞ In the English language, the written vowels are a, e, i, o, u, and sometimes w and y. The spoken vowels are much more numerous.
Close vowel. See under Close, a.
Vowel point. See under Point, n.
Vow·el, a. Of or pertaining to a vowel; vocal.
n 1: a speech sound made with the vocal tract open [syn: vowel
sound] [ant: consonant]
2: a letter of the alphabet standing for a spoken vowel