Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To make a crackling or popping sound; crackle.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To crackle, to make a crackling sound.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To make a series of small, sharp, rapidly repeated explosions or sounds, as salt in fire; to crackle; to snap.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To crackle; snap with a sharp, abrupt, and rapidly repeated sound, as salt in fire or during calcination.
  • Specifically To rattle or crackle; use the crepitaculum, as a rattlesnake.
  • In entomology, to eject suddenly from the anus, with a slight noise, a volatile fluid having somewhat the appearance of smoke and a strong pungent odor, as certain bombardier-beetles of the genus Brachinus and its allies.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. make a crackling sound

Etymologies

Latin crepitāre, crepitāt-, to crackle, frequentative of crepāre, to creak.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin crepitare ("to creak, rattle, clatter, crackle"), frequentive of crepare ("to creak, rattle, etc., burst or break with a noise, crash"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • "Applause crepitates, the magician bows, and the wedding party has still not arrived."
    Witch Grass by Raymond Queneau, translated by Barbara Wright, p 181 of the NYRB paperback

    November 7, 2010

  • This belongs on someone's not-what-you-think list.

    June 20, 2008

  • Night, crepitating slowly, beat by beat.

    - Russel Hoban, Kleinzeit

    June 20, 2008