Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English homepage

Date: 1600-1700
Language: Latin
Origin: , past participle of vibrare 'to shake'


vi‧brate [intransitive and transitive]
if something vibrates, or if you vibrate it, it shakes quickly and continuously with very small movements:
The floor was vibrating to the beat of the music.
As air passes over our vocal cords, it makes them vibrate.
see usage note shake1WORD CHOICE: WORD CHOICE:

shake, wobble, rattle, vibrate, tremble, shiver
Shake is a fairly general word. It can be used to talk about objects moving There was a loud bang and the building shook. It can also be used to talk about people's bodies moving because of cold, strong emotion, or illness Mary shook with rage. If something wobbles, it moves from side to side because it is not steady or balanced The desk wobbles when you put anything on it.If something hard rattles, it shakes and makes a quick series of short sounds The wind blew and the windows rattled.If something vibrates, it makes small quick regular movements that you can hear or feel The engine began to vibrate.If someone trembles, their body shakes with very small movements, especially because they are angry, afraid, or excited Trembling, she approached him.If someone shivers, their body shakes with small movements, especially because they are cold or frightened We sat shivering under a blanket.See also shake

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