Definition of Sign language
1. Noun. Language expressed by visible hand gestures.
Generic synonyms: Language, Linguistic Communication
Specialized synonyms: Finger Spelling, Fingerspelling, American Sign Language, Asl
Terms within: Sign
Derivative terms: Sign
Definition of Sign language
1. Noun. One of several natural languages, typically used by the deaf, where the words and phrases consist of hand shapes, motions, positions, and facial expressions. ¹
2. Noun. The sign language (sense 1) that is used locally or that is mistakenly believed to be the only one. ¹
3. Noun. Sign languages (sense 1) considered collectively. ¹
4. Noun. (context: countable or uncountable) Communication through gestures used when speech is impossible, for example, between monks under a vow of silence or people speaking different languages. ¹
¹ Source: wiktionary.com
Medical Definition of Sign language
1. A system of hand gestures used for communication by the deaf or by people speaking different languages. (12 Dec 1998)
Sign Language Pictures
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Lexicographical Neighbors of Sign Language
Literary usage of Sign language
Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:
1. American Annals of the Deaf by Conference of Executives of American Schools for the Deaf (1911)
"Had they secured a place in our American sign language they would have added ... Whatever may be the future of the sign language, it deserves the careful ..."
2. Report of the Annual Meeting (1880)
"A sign language could be complete and copious in itself. He. described what he had seen of the mutes of the seraglio at Constantinople, whom he considered ..."
3. Personal Recollections and Observations of General Nelson A. Miles by Nelson Appleton Miles, Marion Perry Maus (1896)
"The various tribes of Plains Indians communicated with each other by means of what is known as the sign language. Motions, and positions of the fingers and ..."
4. The Volta Review by Volta Bureau (U.S.), Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf (1913)
"SSS Speech, Spelling, and Sign-language. EXPLANATION. The statistics in Tables II, III, IV, and V were compiled from replies to the following queries ..."
5. The Association Review by American Association to Promote the Teaching of Speech to the Deaf (1904)
"But it is generally understood that all or nearly all the schools reported in the Annals as Combined recognize and use the sign-language for chapel services ..."
6. The Overland Monthly by Bret Harte (1885)
"From the above examples, you may infer that the sign-language must be a crude, ... If we compare the mutes' sign-language with a specimen of their writing, ..."