speak for

Idioms & Phrases

speak for

  1. Intercede for, recommend, as in He spoke for the young applicant, commending her honesty. [c. 1300]

  2. Express the views of, as in I can't speak for my husband but I'd love to accept, or I don't care what Harry thinksSpeak for yourself, Joe. [c. 1300]

  3. speak for itself. Be significant or self-evident, as in They haven't called us in months, and that speaks for itself. [Second half of 1700s]

  4. spoken for. Ordered, engaged, or reserved, as in This lot of rugs is already spoken for, or Is this dance spoken for? This usage comes from the older verb, bespeak, meaning "to order." [Late 1600s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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