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Say vs Utter vs Tell vs State

Sayuttertellstate are comparable when they mean to put into words.

Say often means merely to articulate or pronounce or is used in reporting something voiced.

Say may also imply the fact of putting in speech or in writing without necessarily suggesting the actual wording.

Utter (see also EXPRESS ) stresses the act of putting into speech or spoken words, often with reference only to the use of the voice and with no indication of motive or impulse in speaking.

Tell (see also COUNT REVEAL ) carries no clear implication of whether what is said is put into speech or writing, for the stress is upon imparting an idea or thought and not upon the method used.

Consequently tell may suggest a putting into spoken or written words, or it may connote an equally clear or forcible means of impressing an idea upon the mind of a person or of revealing a condition or a sequence of events.

State (see also RELATE ) is often used in place of say when the added implication of clearness and definiteness is necessary.