a break in the voice

ivLo

Member
serbian
Hi,

I noticed again how attractive his voice was – it had this slight break in it which I found somehow touching.

Could somebody explain to me this break in the voice? (It's an older man, it's not a teenager.)
 
  • johnydynamic

    Senior Member
    English - US
    The term can also refer to a sudden uncontrolled pitch fluctuation that can occur when the speaker is very emotional. Example: "My voice broke often when I spoke at my Mother's funeral."
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I'm closer to Johnydynamic's view than to that of the others.

    I think it means that the tonal quality and pitch of the voice changes from time to time. Certainly this can happen when the speaker is emotional, but it doesn't only have to be at such times. It can happen in everyday conversation, to reflect the passions and enthusiasms of the person talking.
     

    ivLo

    Member
    serbian
    Thank you everybody,

    I am familiar with that meaning when the break in the voice is connected with some emotions, but here I find it a bit odd cause it's in the middle of just a plain, normal situation, some small talk, nothing that would cause any kind of passion or excitement or anything...
    And one additional information is that she describes later on his voice as a husky voice, so I think that if owlman's answer is correct it would be the better solution here.
    If you think I'm wrong please correct me.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Just for the record, we also say someone's voice cracked.
    We do, but I think that's to describe a different phenomenon. We are talking, I think, about something less dramatic.
    [...]
    And one additional information is that she describes later on his voice as a husky voice, so I think that if owlman's answer is correct it would be the better solution here.
    If you think I'm wrong please correct me.
    I've already said I think you are wrong. It's quite possible to have a husky voice with a slight break in it. In my view, to say that someone has a rough voice or a husky voice is different from saying that they have a break in their voice.
     

    ivLo

    Member
    serbian
    I know you said it :) but I thought that maybe you will change your mind after 'additional information' :)

    Thank you very much for your answer.
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    We do, but I think that's to describe a different phenomenon. We are talking, I think, about something less dramatic.
    Interesting... I don't use "voice cracked" or "voice broke" in everyday conversation -- or even in writing -- but I think of them as pretty similar. If anything, "voice broke" is the more serious of the two for me.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Interesting... I don't use "voice cracked" or "voice broke" in everyday conversation -- or even in writing -- but I think of them as pretty similar. If anything, "voice broke" is the more serious of the two for me.
    Neither do I, Copyright. We aren't talking, as I understand it, about the voice cracking or breaking, but of someone having a slight break in the voice. In my experience this is a different, and less dramatic, phenomenon, despite the similarity in the words used.
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    Neither do I, Copyright. We aren't talking, as I understand it, about the voice cracking or breaking, but of someone having a slight break in the voice. In my experience this is a different, and less dramatic, phenomenon, despite the similarity in the words used.
    Thank you, Thomas. I guess I would have to hear it to find it endearing... especially if it were a chronic condition.
     

    ayed

    Senior Member
    Arabic(Saudi)
    in light of the aforsaid sentences, "break in his voice" implies a postive connotation, doesn't it?
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    Yes, that's a positive reaction to something generally perceived to be negative. A similar example might be crooked teeth on a girl -- sometimes they can be quite cute, even though perfectly straight teeth are considered the most attractive. Whether it's a break in the voice or slightly different teeth, the positive or negative effect will depend on the person with the characteristic and the person hearing or seeing.
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I would say no... it's a defect. But a charming one in his case.
    I don't see it as in any way a defect, any more than having one hand slightly larger than the other is a defect. I know several people with slight breaks in their voices; it's partly to do with the way they talk, and it is often charming, if you are inclined that way.
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    I don't see it as in any way a defect, any more than having one hand slightly larger than the other is a defect. I know several people with slight breaks in their voices; it's partly to do with the way they talk, and it is often charming, if you are inclined that way.
    Let me suggest anomaly, then... bearing in mind that one man's cute is another man's defect. :)
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    I don't think we are going to agree, you know.
    Doesn't sound like it, does it? Doesn't mean we can't still be friends. :)

    I find nothing anomalous about it, any more than a small spot on one's knee is an anomaly.
    An anomaly is something that deviates from the normal, an irregularity, (Collins) That's all. So if the majority of people don't have that small spot, then it's an anomaly.

    I think that the master blueprint calls for us to be fairly symmetrical, so if one arm is three inches shorter than the other, that's an anomaly. Nothing negative about it; it just is.

    These things are personal idiosyncrasies, and most of us have them.
    We are more similar that different; that's where we get the blueprint: two arms (reasonably matched in length), two legs (ditto), two eyes, two ears, etc. Birthmark? Anomaly. Large mole three inches to the right of the belly button? Anomaly.
     
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