A syllable can be made up of just a vowel — "a" can be a syllable — or a vowel and one or more consonants — "skip" is one syllable, but three sounds, or phonemes: sk-i-p.

When you're figuring out how many syllables a word has, you have to listen to how it's pronounced, not look at the spelling. Household is two syllables — which you'll hear when you say the word — even though it's got four vowels. Elephant is three syllables, and hippopotamus is five. You can also use syllable for the tiniest bits of language: "I loved every syllable of your speech," or "Please don't repeat a syllable of what I told you."

Definitions of syllable
  1. noun
    a unit of spoken language larger than a phoneme
    “the word `pocket' has two syllables
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    the last syllable in a word
    penult, penultima, penultimate
    the next to last syllable in a word
    antepenult, antepenultima, antepenultimate
    the 3rd syllable of a word counting back from the end
    the syllable added in a reduplicated word form
    solfa syllable
    one of the names for notes of a musical scale in solmization
    do, doh, ut
    the syllable naming the first (tonic) note of any major scale in solmization
    ray, re
    the syllable naming the second (supertonic) note of any major scale in solmization
    the syllable naming the third (mediant) note of any major scale in solmization
    the syllable naming the fourth (subdominant) note of the diatonic scale in solmization
    so, soh, sol
    the syllable naming the fifth (dominant) note of any musical scale in solmization
    la, lah
    the syllable naming the sixth (submediant) note of a major or minor scale in solmization
    si, te, ti
    the syllable naming the seventh (subtonic) note of any musical scale in solmization
    type of:
    language unit, linguistic unit
    one of the natural units into which linguistic messages can be analyzed
Word Family