Tip for Choosing Oral or Verbal

Oral = the spoken word. It also refers to taking something by mouth (e.g., medication). 

Also, conveying information through speaking.

Morris was so shocked to see his mother sitting in the audience that he stumbled over his oral argument to the committee.

Radley’s prescription required that he take the herbs orally instead of mixing in in his food. 

Oral surgery

Oral argument

Oral examination 

Verbal = expressing something through the spoken word, as opposed to the written word.

Polly was reprimanded for her verbal assault on Ken when she could not get her way. 

Verbal agreement

Verbal persuasion

According to #editor Mark Allen (markalleneditorial.com), “I tend to favor oral when we mean spoken, but verbal is used so much that I think it’s OK if the context is clear.” 

My tip: use “oral” if you are referring precisely to the mouth.

It is common to use verbal for anything spoken.

#editormarkallen #amwriting #amediting #English #writing #editing

#oral #verbal #vocabulary

©January 2023 editsbymarks.com

About The dutty is "the ground," the foundation, the earth--just like words are part of the foundation on which I build my life.

Reason for being: To tell stories and help writers and others with a message to put their best word forward.
This entry was posted in Definitions, Editing/Proofreading, Opinion. Bookmark the permalink.

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