speak to

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speak to

1. Literally, to communicate with someone or a group by speaking. George and I haven't been speaking to one another ever since our argument.
2. To address some topic or issue verbally, as in a speech or interview. The senator spoke to the need for bipartisan support if any meaningful tax reform were going to be possible.
3. To indicate or signal some topic or issue. The amount of respiratory problems present in this city's population speaks to the abysmal air quality here.
See also: speak, to
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

speak to someone

to talk to someone. I am angry with him and I refuse to speak to him. Were you speaking to me?
See also: speak, to

speak to something

[for something] to address, indicate, or signal something. This event speaks to the need for good communication. Your present state of employment speaks to your need for a better education.
See also: speak, to
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

speak to

To address some topic: The mayor spoke to the issue of tax increases.
See also: speak, to
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in classic literature ?
Now Dingaan, whose shadow lies upon the land, the king whom I serve, and who sits in the place of the Black One who is gone, speaks to you by me, his mouth.
If he necessarily speaks to us in creating us, the personal relation established by such an address would necessarily be given in creation, and gratuity could not be "double." (22)
(30) This raises the question, if someone speaks to me must I know that he does so?
The last on the list was traditionally translated as "fear of the Lord." Today's schoolchildren know it as "wonder and awe in God's presence." It's the feeling we get when the sun rises or sets in a solemn procession of colors; when the beloved speaks to us words of love; when healing comes after long illness; when we know, after a season of doubt, that we're going to make it--or when we come to understand, to our great surprise, that it will be all right even if we don't.
He authentically speaks both the standard English of the bourgeois class and the dialect of the subaltern, and he speaks to whites, black folk, and the leaders of his race.
We seek to listen to the voice of the Spirit through Scripture, who speaks to us in the particularity of the historical-cultural context in which we live.
Whether you believe God or men wrote the Bible, it too speaks to how we live.
Like the great drum that he hears played during the cotton harvest celebration, John must become the hermeneutical instrument that "speaks to gods as a man and to men as a God" (29).