American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. Soft speech produced without full voice.
- n. Something uttered very softly.
- n. A secretly or surreptitiously expressed belief, rumor, or hint: whispers of scandal.
- n. A low rustling sound: the whisper of wind in the pines.
- v. To speak softly.
- v. To speak quietly and privately, as by way of gossip, slander, or intrigue.
- v. To make a soft rustling sound.
- v. To utter very softly.
- v. To say or tell privately or secretly.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To speak without uttering voice or sonant breath; speak with a low, rustling voice; speak softly or under the breath; converse in whispers: often implying plotting, evil-speaking, and the like.
- To make a low, rustling sound, like that of a whisper.
- To utter in a low non-vocal tone; say under the breath; state or communicate in whispers: often implying plotting, slanderous talk, etc.
- To address or inform in a whisper or low voice, especially with the view of avoiding publicity: elliptical for whisper to.
- n. The utterance of words with the breath not made vocal; a low, soft, rustling voice.
- n. A whispered word, remark, or conversation.
- n. A secret hint, suggestion, or insinuation.
- n. A low, rustling sound of whispering, or a similar sound, as of the wind.
- n. Specifically, in medicine, the sound of the whispering voice transmitted to the ear of the auscultator placed against the chest-wall.
- n. The act of speaking in a quiet voice, especially, without vibration of the vocal cords.
- n. usually in plural A rumor.
- n. figuratively A faint trace or hint (of something).
- n. Internet A private message to an individual in a chat room.
- v. To talk in a quiet voice.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To speak softly, or under the breath, so as to be heard only by one near at hand; to utter words without sonant breath; to talk without that vibration in the larynx which gives sonorous, or vocal, sound. See Whisper, n.
- v. To make a low, sibilant sound or noise.
- v. To speak with suspicion, or timorous caution; to converse in whispers, as in secret plotting.
- v. To utter in a low and nonvocal tone; to say under the breath; hence, to mention privately and confidentially, or in a whisper.
- v. Archaic To address in a whisper, or low voice.
- v. obsolete To prompt secretly or cautiously; to inform privately.
- n. A low, soft, sibilant voice or utterance, which can be heard only by those near at hand; voice or utterance that employs only breath sound without tone, friction against the edges of the vocal cords and arytenoid cartilages taking the place of the vibration of the cords that produces tone; sometimes, in a limited sense, the sound produced by such friction as distinguished from
breath soundmade by friction against parts of the mouth. See Voice, n., 2, and Guide to Pronunciation, §§ 5, 153, 154.
- n. A cautious or timorous speech.
- n. Something communicated in secret or by whispering; a suggestion or insinuation.
- n. A low, sibilant sound.
- n. a light noise, like the noise of silk clothing or leaves blowing in the wind
- v. speak softly; in a low voice
- n. speaking softly without vibration of the vocal cords
- From Old English hwisprian ("to whistle"). (Wiktionary)
- From Middle English whisperen, to whisper, from Old English hwisprian. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“At last, there came a little rustling, whispering sound, all round the window: _rustle, whisper, whisper_.”
“You just have to/* whisper ... whisper ... whisper*/”
“The urge to spend is strong, especially with what I call the "whisper crew" -- friends, relatives, hangers-on, etc. -- surrounding them.”
“Unions and Democrats are routinely found, again and again, to be embezzling massive amounts of money, with barely a whisper from the media.”
“So I left Benicia, where John Barleycorn had nearly got me, and ranged wider afield in pursuit of the whisper from the back of life to come and find.”
“After offering it for about $17 million without success in what is called a "whisper listing," he officially listed the apartment for $14.85 million in January 2009.”
“The Hotel Montana in Port Au Prince collapsed into a mess of masonry with nary a whisper from the pile.”
“Not a whisper from the right on the fiscal madness of that or actually Cutting Taxes irresponsibly while troops suffered in the field for lack of good armor protection.”
“My whisper is not simply a direct message sent to everyone; that would defeat the point.”
““Say: — Refuge I take with the Lord of men the sovran of men the God of men from the Tempter, the Demon who tempteth in whisper the breasts of men and from Jinnis and (evil) men.””
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