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re·​ver·​ber·​ate ri-ˈvər-bə-ˌrāt How to pronounce reverberate (audio)
reverberated; reverberating

intransitive verb

: to become driven back
: to become reflected
: to continue in or as if in a series of echoes : resound
a historic event that still reverberates today


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re·​ver·​ber·​ate ri-ˈvər-b(ə-)rət How to pronounce reverberate (audio)

Did you know?

The letter sequence "v-e-r-b" in reverberate might make you think at first of such word-related brethren as proverb, verbal, and verbose, all of which derive from the Latin noun verbum, meaning "word." In fact, reverberate comes from a much different source: the Latin verb verberare, meaning "to whip, beat, or lash," which is related to the noun verber, meaning "rod." Reverberate entered the English language in the 15th century, and one of its early meanings was "to beat, drive, or cast back." By the early 1600s, it began to appear in contexts associated with sound that repeats or returns the way an echo does.

Examples of reverberate in a Sentence

Verb the sound of thunder reverberated from one end of the mountain pass to the other
Recent Examples on the Web
The statements, while made in reaction to a shocking court decision that will reverberate for months if not years, were dismissed by Democrats as GOP backpedaling. Stacey Barchenger, The Arizona Republic, 10 Apr. 2024 But none of that has been quite as hands-on as Ecuador’s highly controversial decision to raid Mexico’s embassy – a major violation of diplomatic norms that continues to reverberate across the region. Stefano Pozzebon, CNN, 10 Apr. 2024 The earthquake did not cause damage, but reverberated for 30 seconds throughout the shop. Thomas Fuller, New York Times, 5 Apr. 2024 But as the repercussions of the new law continue to reverberate around the world of higher education in Utah, many leaders see this as the tip of the iceberg. Rayna Reid Rayford, Essence, 3 Apr. 2024 The sound of velcro ripping reverberated through the stunned, silent locker room when Padilla peeled the nameplate off her locker. Thuc Nhi Nguyen, Los Angeles Times, 2 Apr. 2024 All this makes California's wage hike a high-profile case study for how exactly a higher minimum wage reverberates through the local economy. Alina Selyukh, NPR, 30 Mar. 2024 Next: slanting notes of guitar, reverberating with an ache. Sophie Yun Mancini, Condé Nast Traveler, 26 Mar. 2024 The Nakba has always reverberated strongly among Palestinians, but particularly in the Gaza Strip. Ghada Abdulfattah, The Christian Science Monitor, 1 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'reverberate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Latin reverberatus, past participle of reverberare, from re- + verberare to lash, from verber rod — more at vervain

First Known Use


15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1


1603, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of reverberate was in the 15th century


Dictionary Entries Near reverberate

Cite this Entry

“Reverberate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition


reverberated; reverberating
: to continue in or as if in a series of echoes

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