\ ˈhis How to pronounce hiss (audio) \
hissed; hissing; hisses

Definition of hiss

intransitive verb

: to make a sharp sibilant sound the crowd hissed in disapproval hissing steam

transitive verb

1 : to express disapproval of by hissing hissed the performers off the stage
2 : to utter or whisper angrily or threateningly and with a hiss

Other Words from hiss

hiss noun
hisser noun

Synonyms for hiss


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Examples of hiss in a Sentence

The radiator hissed as it let off steam. The audience hissed him off the stage. “Leave me alone!” he hissed.
Recent Examples on the Web The two share similar tan and brown colorings, and gopher snakes will often hiss or vibrate their tails when threatened, according to the wildlife division. Paighten Harkins, The Salt Lake Tribune, 3 June 2022 Fat king oyster mushrooms are trimmed, then painted with olive oil before being sent screaming into a hot skillet to brown and hiss off their moisture. Los Angeles Times, 18 Nov. 2021 Lacy and Daddario have the toughest roles, and White and the actors do an impressive job of not giving us easy cues about when to hiss at Shane’s selfishness, or root for Rachel’s yearning to be independent. oregonlive, 7 July 2021 Sensing the commotion and chaos, Aries began to hiss and growl. Brett Steenbarger, Forbes, 20 May 2021 But imagine trying to plead your case before a judge while your phone cuts in and out, your kids wail in the background, or library patrons hiss shhhh. Eric Scigliano, The Atlantic, 13 Apr. 2021 Cordova-Rojas, who previously volunteered at the New York City Wild Bird Fund for five years, said swans are normally territorial and can hiss at or try to flee from people when threatened. Alec Snyder, CNN, 12 Nov. 2020 When threatened, these wide-eyed critters will hiss and clasp their paws atop their heads, undulate like snakes, and suck up a mouthful of venom from glands in their armpits. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian Magazine, 19 Feb. 2020 One painful memory of mine from the summer of 2018—of an encounter with a rabid harasser who hissed threatening insults at me at the San Francisco Airport—has returned to haunt me. Jiwei Xiao, The New York Review of Books, 6 Apr. 2020 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hiss.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of hiss

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense

History and Etymology for hiss

Middle English, of imitative origin

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Time Traveler for hiss

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The first known use of hiss was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Hiss.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hiss. Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More Definitions for hiss


\ ˈhis How to pronounce hiss (audio) \
hissed; hissing

Kids Definition of hiss

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to make a sound like a long \s\ The creature hissed and hot flame shot from its mouth.— Mary Pope Osborne, Christmas in Camelot
2 : to show dislike or disapproval by hissing
3 : to say (something) in a loud or angry whisper "Keep your voice down!" he hissed.



Kids Definition of hiss (Entry 2 of 2)

: a sound like a long \s\ sometimes used as a sign of dislike or disapproval the hiss of steam The hiss from the audience became louder.

More from Merriam-Webster on hiss

Nglish: Translation of hiss for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hiss for Arabic Speakers


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