laugh·​ter | \ ˈlaf-tər How to pronounce laughter (audio) , ˈläf-\

Definition of laughter

1 : a sound of or as if of laughing
2 archaic : a cause of merriment

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Examples of laughter in a Sentence

The audience roared with laughter. the nervous producers were reassured by the sounds of laughter coming from the theater

Recent Examples on the Web

Volitional laughter, conversely, comes from the part of the brain that handles speech. Popular Mechanics, "Can You Tell Someone's Nationality From Their Laugh?," 9 Aug. 2018 Bo Burnham has made the kind of movie that makes your heart swell with laughter, sadness, nostalgia, horror, embarrassment, and every single emotion in between., "Eighth Grade Is So Real It Hurts In All The Right Places," 10 July 2018 And not just any laughter, but the signature chuckle that comedy fans recognize as belonging to actor-writer-producer-director Seth Rogen. Kate Stanhope, The Hollywood Reporter, "On the Set of 'Future Man' as Seth Rogen, Josh Hutcherson Push the Limits With Hulu's Comedy," 18 June 2018 The former enemies ended up wasted, hanging off of each other and throwing their heads back with laughter. Aurelie Corinthios,, "Jersey Shore Cast Squashes Their Beef with Angelina — But She's Still Not Part of the 'Family'," 31 May 2018 Many of them were unfamiliar with her type of breathing and relaxation techniques — all which resulted in gales of laughter. Sue Ellen Ross, Post-Tribune, "Event helps connect people with the Gary community," 18 May 2018 There's no better way to ease a standoff between an adult and a toddler than with laughter. Ida Lieszkovszky,, "Toddlers love to say 'no,' and you should let them: Multitasking Moms and Dads," 6 May 2018 Wolf’s performance was met with waves of laughter in the room, but subsequent responses have been sharply divided. David Z. Morris, Fortune, "Is the Michelle Wolf White House Correspondents' Dinner Backlash All About Gender?," 29 Apr. 2018 Then things get progressively sillier with a string of really bad jokes that leave Cornelius-native Luke Maye, Theo Pinson and Duke’s Grayson Allen doubled over with laughter. Mark Price, charlotteobserver, "ACC video features players Luke Maye and Grayson Allen telling really bad jokes | Charlotte Observer," 9 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'laughter.' 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 laughter

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for laughter

Middle English, from Old English hleahtor; akin to Old English hliehhan

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Statistics for laughter

Last Updated

17 May 2019

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Time Traveler for laughter

The first known use of laughter was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for laughter



English Language Learners Definition of laughter

: the action or sound of laughing


laugh·​ter | \ ˈlaf-tər How to pronounce laughter (audio) , ˈläf-\

Kids Definition of laughter

: the action or sound of laughing

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Comments on laughter

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


to speak slightingly about or to degrade

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