hol·​ler | \ˈhä-lər \
hollered; hollering\ˈhäl-​riŋ, ˈhä-​lə-​ \

Definition of holler 

(Entry 1 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to cry out (as to attract attention or in pain) : shout hollering for help

2 : gripe, complain will always holler about tax increases

transitive verb

: to call out (a word or phrase) hollering her daughter's name



Definition of holler (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : shout, cry give a holler if you need any help

2 : complaint

3 : a freely improvised work song of black Americans field hollers


Definition of holler (Entry 3 of 3)

chiefly dialectal variant of

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Synonyms & Antonyms for holler

Synonyms: Verb

beef, bellyache, bitch, bleat, carp, caterwaul, complain, crab, croak, fuss, gripe, grizzle, grouch, grouse, growl, grumble, grump, inveigh, keen, kick, kvetch, maunder [chiefly British], moan, murmur, mutter, nag, repine, scream, squawk, squeal, wail, whimper, whine, whinge [British], yammer, yawp (or yaup), yowl

Synonyms: Noun

cry, hoot, howl, shout, whoop, yell, yowl

Antonyms: Verb

crow, delight, rejoice

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Examples of holler in a Sentence


He was hollering across the fields to his workers. They were screaming and hollering at each other all night. She hollered across the street, “Did you hear the news?”. Someone was hollering my name. People always holler about tax increases.


heard a holler from somewhere in the woods and ran toward it there didn't seem to be a thermostat setting that wouldn't bring a holler from somebody
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Jimenez then walked away, hollering an expletive and a racist word. Kristine Phillips, Washington Post, "A man tore off a teen’s ‘Make America Great Again’ hat and threw a soda in his face, police say," 6 July 2018 Having an instructor hollering at me, loud music pumping, and others around me to compete with are crucial for my motivation. Cheryl Wischhover, Vox, "Peloton’s $2,000 stationary bike has totally disrupted working out at home," 14 Nov. 2018 The video below speaks for itself: As my grandmother used to say — a hit dog will holler. Rachel Epstein, Marie Claire, "Gun Control Measures in the Midterms: How You Can Make a Difference With Your Vote," 30 Oct. 2018 Jimenez then walked away, hollering an expletive and a racist word. Kristine Phillips, Washington Post, "A man tore off a teen’s ‘Make America Great Again’ hat and threw a soda in his face, police say," 6 July 2018 This girl was hollering for help and banging on doors. Stephanie Petit, PEOPLE.com, "Man Allegedly Beat Girlfriend and Set Her on Fire in N.Y.C. Home Before Fleeing Scene," 13 June 2018 Austin slammed his bat on the plate, threw it down and took four steps toward the mound while hollering. CBS News, "Yankees and Red Sox exchange punches at Fenway," 12 Apr. 2018 Jimenez then walked away, hollering an expletive and a racist word. Kristine Phillips, chicagotribune.com, "Man accused of taking teen's 'Make America Great Again' hat and throwing soda in his face faces theft charge," 7 July 2018 Eggy’s mom and his brothers, the guy who sold pinchos around the corner from the front gate, a bunch of street kids, some viejas who lived a couple buildings over, everybody rowdy, hollering, shoving each other. Longreads, "La Otra," 26 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

A few dozen current and former journalists from the Capital Gazette — some with tears in their eyes — marched down Main Street to the sound of supportive whistles, hollers and applause. Pamela Wood, baltimoresun.com, "Annapolis Independence Day parade honors freedom of the press, especially for The Capital," 5 July 2018 Ed shouted from the stern: Jason, you better holler for somebody. Earl Swift, Outside Online, "The Incredible True Story of the Henrietta C.," 20 June 2018 The 29-year-old singer took to Twitter on Monday (June 18) to give a holler to Post Malone and Lana Del Rey. Taylor Weatherby, Billboard, "Kacey Musgraves Wants 'Countrified' Collaborations With Post Malone & Lana Del Rey," 19 June 2018 After the drop, the ride takes off for a delightful, spinning romp through the Ozarks holler. Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "Silver Dollar City's Time Traveler coaster review," 1 Apr. 2018 Hey man, tell Bruce to come holler at me after the season. Bob Mcmanaman, azcentral, "Arizona Cardinals' Brice Butler 'going to prove' he is worthy of being team's No. 2 WR," 10 June 2018 Coming home after a year in Vietnam — heck, surviving a year in Vietnam — was reason for the soldiers to holler. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Veterans get early Memorial Day thank-you for their service," 24 May 2018 The one populated by pale people who live shortened days in the hollers, where the air and forest are thick and heavy. New York Times, "A Novel of Kentucky Noir, So Humane It’s Bathed in Light," 23 May 2018 The driver revs his engine, and his passenger yips and hollers, standing tall, waving a high-powered flashlight at the bear. Eva Holland, Smithsonian, "Where the Doomed, Beloved Polar Bear Is Still a Dangerous Predator," 16 May 2018

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

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First Known Use of holler


1592, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1825, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for holler


alteration of hollo


see holler entry 1

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Learn More about holler

Statistics for holler

Last Updated

3 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for holler

The first known use of holler was in 1592

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More Definitions for holler



English Language Learners Definition of holler

: to call out loudly

: to make loud or angry complaints


hol·​ler | \ˈhä-lər \
hollered; hollering

Kids Definition of holler

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to cry out : shout



Kids Definition of holler (Entry 2 of 2)

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More from Merriam-Webster on holler

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with holler

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for holler

Spanish Central: Translation of holler

Nglish: Translation of holler for Spanish Speakers

Comments on holler

What made you want to look up holler? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


living or existing for a long time

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