verb (used without object)
- to speak aloud in an oratorical manner; make a formal speech: Brutus declaimed from the steps of the Roman senate building.
- to inveigh (usually followed by against): He declaimed against the high rents in slums.
- to speak or write for oratorical effect, as without sincerity or sound argument.
verb (used with object)
- to utter aloud in an oratorical manner: to declaim a speech.
- to make (a speech, statement, etc) loudly and in a rhetorical manner
- to speak lines from (a play, poem, etc) with studied eloquence; recite
- (intr foll by against) to protest (against) loudly and publicly
late 14c., from Middle French déclamer and directly from Latin declamare “to practice public speaking, to bluster,” from de- intensive prefix + clamare “to cry, shout” (see claim (v.)). At first in English spelled declame, but altered under influence of claim. Related: Declaimed; declaiming.