trill

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 /trɪl/

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WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2016
trill1 /trɪl/USA pronunciation   n. [countable]
  1. Music and Dancea rapid alternation between two nearby musical tones.
  2. a similar quavering sound, as that made by a bird or by a person laughing.

v. 
  1. Music and Danceto sing, make, pronounce, or play with a trill: [+ object]to trill a few notes.[no object]birds trilling in the morning.

WordReference Random House Unabridged Dictionary of American English © 2016
trill1 (tril),USA pronunciation  v.t. 
  1. to sing or play with a vibratory or quavering effect.
  2. [Phonet.]to produce (a sound) with a trill.
  3. (of birds, insects, etc.) to sing or utter in a succession of rapidly alternating sounds.

v.i. 
  1. to resound vibrantly, or with a rapid succession of sounds, as the voice, song, or laughter.
  2. to utter or make a sound or succession of sounds resembling such singing, as a bird, frog, grasshopper, or person laughing.
  3. to execute a shake or trill with the voice or on a musical instrument.
  4. [Phonet.]to execute a trill, esp. with the tongue, as while singing, talking, or whistling.

n. 
  1. the act or sound of trilling.
  2. [Music.]a rapid alternation of two adjacent tones;
    a shake.
  3. a similar sound, or succession of sounds, uttered or made by a bird, an insect, a person laughing, etc.
  4. [Phonet.]
    • a sequence of repetitive, rapid, vibratory movements produced in any free articulator or membrane by a rush of air expelled from the lungs and often causing a corresponding sequence of contacts between the vibrating articulator and another organ or surface.
    • a speech sound produced by such a trill.
  • Italian trillo quaver or warble in singing Gmc; compare Dutch trillen to vibrate, late Middle English trillen to shake or rock (something)
  • 1635–45

trill2  (tril),USA pronunciation Archaic., v.i.
  1. to flow in a thin stream;
    trickle.

v.t. 
  1. to cause to flow in a thin stream.
  • Old Danish trijlæ to roll (said, e.g., of tears and of a wheelbarrow); compare Norwegian trille, Swedish trilla. See trill1
  • Middle English trillen to make (something) turn, to roll, flow (said of tears, water) 1300–50


Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::

trill /trɪl/ n
  1. a melodic ornament consisting of a rapid alternation between a principal note and the note a whole tone or semitone above it
  2. a shrill warbling sound, esp as made by some birds
  3. the production of a similar effect using the uvula against the back of the tongue
vb
  1. to sound, sing, or play (a trill or with a trill)
  2. (transitive) to pronounce (an (r) sound) by the production of a trill
Etymology: 17th Century: from Italian trillo, from trillare, apparently from Middle Dutch trillen to vibrate



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