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  • Verb




Outside the glass booth, Herman could see the upset woman waving her free hand and gesticulating during her telephone conversation. She banged her palm against the wall of the booth and pointed aggressively into the air, gesticulating and emphasizing her displeasure with hand and arm motions. After hanging up, the woman tossed her hands over her head and gesticulated her feelings of frustration and helplessness without any words being said.

Quiz: Why do people often gesticulate?

  • They want to use hand movements to help communicate a point.
  • They want to show respect for someone by bowing their head.
  • They want to have time to think about an idea before sharing it.

Memory Hook

Gesticulate Articulate Gestures To gesticulate is just to be articulate in your gestures.


  • The cheeks are hollowed with humanitarian concern, the voice reverberates with the sufferings of all the Christian martyrs and several others besides, and the arms gesticulate as though conducting the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. —BNET
  • Gestures are always full of meaning, and if Rwandans often strike rather statuesque attitudes when they gesticulate they know exactly what they are doing. —BNET
  • As for the alleged shocker of a climax, James Newton Howard pumps up his score, Hoblit picks up the pace, and the actors gesticulate like crazy. —Rolling Stone
  • One of the biggest cliches in psychology is that in times of crisis, women turn to friends, while men either withdraw or curse and gesticulate. —Newsweek

Word Ingredients

gest bear, carry
-ul- little
-ate make something have a certain quality

When one gesticulates, one is using “little” motions or actions of the hands and arms, which is a way of “bearing or carrying” oneself as one speaks.

Word Theater

Telegraph UK Tony Blair gesticulating while talking.

Word Constellation