murmur

noun
mur·​mur | \ ˈmər-mər How to pronounce murmur (audio) \

Definition of murmur

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a half-suppressed or muttered complaint : grumbling murmurs of disapproval
2a : a low indistinct but often continuous sound a murmur of voices the murmur of the waves along the shore
b : a soft or gentle utterance the murmur of nannies cooing into baby carriages— Nancy Gibbs
3 : an atypical sound of the heart typically indicating a functional or structural abnormality The physician detected a heart murmur in his patient.

murmur

verb
murmured; murmuring; murmurs

Definition of murmur (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to make a murmur the breeze murmured in the pines

transitive verb

: to say in a murmur

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Other Words from murmur

Verb

murmurer noun

Examples of murmur in a Sentence

Noun the murmur of the crowd The suggestion brought murmurs of disapproval. He spoke in a murmur. They spoke to each other in murmurs. the murmur of the waves along the shore Verb He murmured something about having to get home. “Thank you,” she murmured as she left the room. The breeze murmured in the pines.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun He was seated a row behind her and leaning forward, his voice a steady, urgent murmur in her ear, the sound of it not unpleasant. Te-ping Chen, The Atlantic, "Shanghai Murmur," 11 Dec. 2020 Raffensperger, joined by his office counsel, kept a calm and almost flat tone, occasionally giving generally succinct answers, while Trump alternately raised his voice in anger or dropped to a wheedling murmur. Laura King, Los Angeles Times, "‘Find’ winning votes for him, Trump demands in taped call with Georgia official," 3 Jan. 2021 There was a murmur in the Cougars’ mostly empty gym in the third quarter when Washington threw down a dunk. Mike Hutton, chicagotribune.com, "‘They are the real deal’: Quimari Peterson picks up the scoring slack with 18 points as West Side rolls past Lake Central," 8 Dec. 2020 But there is a tiny murmur of resistance to the Olympic behemoth, particularly as the virus spikes around the world. Yuri Kageyama, Star Tribune, "Critics speak out on Tokyo Olympic costs, pandemic, fairness," 12 Nov. 2020 Accordingly, the pith of the show is Ma’s voice — not just her husky murmur but the sound of a Black artist singing her story to and for her community. New York Times, "August Wilson, American Bard," 3 Dec. 2020 Aside from prioritizing passengers who needed assistance, JetBlue patiently boarded the flight from back of plane to front, with no murmur of opposition from passengers. Corina Quinn, Condé Nast Traveler, "My First Pandemic Flight Was Much Less Stressful Than I Anticipated," 27 Oct. 2020 There was a gentle murmur of agreement from the room. Michael Deagler, Harper's Magazine, "New Poets," 27 Oct. 2020 The mood in the chamber felt different this time—the smiles a little forced, a murmur of tension and doubt in the air. Barack Obama, The New Yorker, "A President Looks Back on His Toughest Fight," 26 Oct. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With Drew Brees out for a while, some talking heads are starting to murmur about the Bucs being the best team in the conference. Mark Craig, Star Tribune, "Mark Craig's Week 11 NFL Power Ratings: Vikings moving up," 17 Nov. 2020 When Billy is strung up on a yardarm, the sailors murmur their discontent; a display of martial discipline staves off any threat of mutiny. Alex Ross, The New Yorker, "Pushed to the Edge by “Beau Travail”," 20 Oct. 2020 Knowing my insatiable sweet tooth, my mom would murmur a few words to our waitress, who’d bustle over with plastic drink cups, spoons stuck through the lids. Sovi Wellons, Bon Appétit, "Chè Ba Màu Is Pure Bliss in Summer’s Sticky Heat," 12 Aug. 2020 Some murmur about sharing the cost among a group of friends who all work for different employers — a haphazard coworking space during times when coworking should be dead. Brittany Meiling, San Diego Union-Tribune, "WFH is not working: I traded a car payment for an office lease — and I have no regrets," 4 Aug. 2020 By the time the third inning is over and the A’s have no hits, the crowd is starting to murmur. Bruce Jenkins, SFChronicle.com, "Sporting Green reader memories: Loma Prieta at Candlestick, Matt Cain perfect," 27 June 2020 On a recent day Lein stood in one of her barns as a contented chorus of 9,400 chickens clucked and murmured. Meg Jones, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "It wasn't just toilet paper. People stocked up on eggs during pandemic, sending wholesale prices skyrocketing," 23 Apr. 2020 Curreri murmured along quietly into his microphone, a quiet tuh tuh tuh. Brendan Fitzgerald, Longreads, "“I miss my body when it was ferocious” The Transfiguration of Paul Curreri," 14 Mar. 2020 Under the fluorescent light of the intensive care unit, Abudulfetah touched his baby’s soft hair, murmuring words of prayer. Washington Post, "US heart surgeon treats children lacking care in Libya’s war," 11 Mar. 2020

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

History and Etymology for murmur

Noun and Verb

Middle English murmure, from Anglo-French disturbance, from Latin murmur murmur, roar, of imitative origin

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Time Traveler for murmur

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for murmur

Last Updated

18 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Murmur.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/murmur. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

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More Definitions for murmur

murmur

noun
How to pronounce murmur (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of murmur

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a low sound made when many people are speaking
: a quiet expression of an opinion or feeling
: speech or a way of speaking that is quiet and soft

murmur

verb

English Language Learners Definition of murmur (Entry 2 of 2)

: to say (something) in a quiet and soft voice
: to make a low, continuous sound

murmur

noun
mur·​mur | \ ˈmər-mər How to pronounce murmur (audio) \

Kids Definition of murmur

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a low faint sound the murmur of voices
2 : a quiet expression of an opinion or feeling murmurs of approval

murmur

verb
murmured; murmuring

Kids Definition of murmur (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to make a low faint sound The breeze murmured in the trees.
2 : to say in a voice too quiet to be heard clearly She murmured “thank you” as she left.

murmur

noun
mur·​mur | \ ˈmər-mər How to pronounce murmur (audio) \

Medical Definition of murmur

: an atypical sound of the heart typically indicating a functional or structural abnormality

called also heart murmur

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Comments on murmur

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