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Thread: Word of the Day Friday May 11, 2012: sibilant

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    Word of the Day Friday May 11, 2012: sibilant

    Word of the Day
    Friday May 11, 2012: sibilant

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    sibilant \SIB-uh-luhnt\ , adjective:
    1. Hissing.
    2. Phonetics. Characterized by a hissing sound; noting sounds like those spelled with s in this.
    1. Phonetics. A sibilant consonant.
    This is the way the presence of a ghost was detected: Some sound would be heard, such as a sibilant noise, a soft whistle, or something like murmurs, or some sensation in a part of the body might be felt.
    -- George H. Ellis, Legends of Gods and Ghosts: Hawaiian Mythology
    He just drank his coffee, making a little sibilant sound, and watched the earth mover lumber back and forth, back and forth, its shovel going up and down and over and up and down and over again.
    -- Anna Quindlen, Object Lessons
    The wind in the patch of pine woods off there—how sibilant.
    -- Walt Whitman, Prose Works 1892: Specimen Days
    Sibilant stems from the Latin word sībilant- which meant "whistling or hissing." It is assumed to imitative of the sound itself. Entry and Pronunciation for sibilant
    The woods are lovely, dark, and deep, But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep. Robert Frost

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