stutter

verb
stut·​ter | \ ˈstə-tər How to pronounce stutter (audio) \
stuttered; stuttering; stutters

Definition of stutter

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to speak with involuntary disruption or blocking of speech (as by repetition or prolongation of vocal sounds)
2 : to move or act in a halting or spasmodic manner the old jalopy bucks and stutters uphill— William Cleary

transitive verb

: to say, speak, or sound with or as if with a stutter

stutter

noun

Definition of stutter (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of stuttering
2 : the habitual tendency to stutter had a mild stutter : stuttering

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from stutter

Verb

stutterer \ ˈstə-​tər-​ər How to pronounce stutterer (audio) \ noun

Examples of stutter in a Sentence

Verb I used to stutter when I was a child. She stutters when she gets excited.
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb There's not much prestige in winning a game of skill because your opponent saw your character stuttering around the stage. Aurich Lawson, Ars Technica, "How a rejected My Little Pony game helped save a historic tournament," 14 May 2020 Asked by a pastor for his advice for a young person who stutters, the former vice president had some practical advice from his own experience. Ryan Teague Beckwith, Bloomberg.com, "Buttigieg and Sanders Battle to Virtual Tie: Campaign Update," 8 May 2020 Operating out of the slot below against Ohio State, Bryant stutters to sell a run block, before breaking in and making a nice grab in traffic. Ellis L. Williams, cleveland, "How versatile Harrison Bryant can help the Browns as a rookie TE in 2020 -- Film review," 6 May 2020 Some could be seen running in stuttering patterns on the horizon. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Stadia’s latest woe: Its PUBG port is overrun with official, crappy bots [Updated]," 29 Apr. 2020 Television hosts are broadcasting from their homes and other sources of entertainment, like theaters, have been stuttered. Caitlin O'kane, CBS News, "WWE deemed an "essential" business in Florida during pandemic, will resume live matches," 14 Apr. 2020 The talks also stuttered due to a promise the Americans made to the Taliban without consulting Ghani: that Kabul would release 5,000 Taliban prisoners before talks would start. Kimberly Dozier, Time, "As Coronavirus Spreads, Washington's $1 Billion Aid Cut Couldn't Have Come At a Worse Time for Afghanistan," 4 Apr. 2020 Amazon also seems like an odd potential gaming competitor—the company's own game-development efforts have been stuttering at best, and long-standing reports of plans for an Amazon game streaming service have yet to bear public fruit. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Microsoft now sees Amazon and Google as its main gaming threats," 5 Feb. 2020 Meanwhile, Former White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders apologized for mocking Biden for stuttering while giving an answer during the debate. Patrick Smith, NBC News, "The Morning Rundown: Argument over rules delays start of Senate trial," 20 Dec. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Withers, who overcame a childhood stutter, was born the last of six children in the coal mining town of Slab Fork, West Virginia. Bloomberg.com, "‘Lean On Me,’ ‘Lovely Day’ Singer Bill Withers Dies At 81," 10 May 2020 The last African-American Everyman’ William Harrison Withers Jr. overcame a childhood stutter in the humble coal mining town of Slab Fork, West Virginia. Stephanie Toone, ajc, "BREAKING: Singer Bill Withers dies at 81," 3 Apr. 2020 Born in Slab Fork, West Virginia, Withers overcame a stutter as a child and joined the Navy as a teen. Lisa Respers France, CNN, "Bill Withers, 'Lean On Me' and 'Lovely Day' singer, has died at 81," 3 Apr. 2020 Prior to the crisis, one in every three South Africans was looking for work, and that number is expected to have increased significantly as businesses fold and supply chains stutter in the face of the government’s lockdown. Sarah Wild, Quartz Africa, "South Africa is deploying its army to enforce the lockdown but also ramping up social spending," 21 Apr. 2020 Known issues remaining include the Enhanced Sync feature triggering black screens in some situations, some games suffering from intermittent stutter on Navi GPUs or while running alongside video capture software, and a handful of others. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "AMD's Radeon 20.2.2 drivers squash pesky black screen bugs and other community complaints," 28 Feb. 2020 Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders late Thursday mocked former Vice President Joe Biden for accentuating a stutter in his response to a question at the sixth 2020 Democratic presidential debate. Rebecca Shabad, NBC News, "Sarah Sanders mocks Biden for stuttering. Biden responds, 'It's called empathy. Look it up.'," 20 Dec. 2019 Withers, who overcame a childhood stutter, was born the last of six children in the coal mining town of Slab Fork, West Virginia. Mark Kennedy, Anchorage Daily News, "Bill Withers, soulful singer of ‘Lean On Me’ and other hits, has died at 81," 3 Apr. 2020 Withers was dogged by a stutter that remained well into his late teens. Hua Hsu, The New Yorker, "Bill Withers Was Always There if You Needed Him," 3 Apr. 2020

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

See More

First Known Use of stutter

Verb

1566, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

Noun

1651, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stutter

Verb

frequentative of English dialect stut to stutter, from Middle English stutten; akin to Dutch stotteren to stutter, Goth stautan to strike — more at contusion

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about stutter

Time Traveler for stutter

Time Traveler

The first known use of stutter was in 1566

See more words from the same year

Statistics for stutter

Last Updated

3 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Stutter.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/stutter. Accessed 5 Jun. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for stutter

stutter

verb
How to pronounce stutter (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of stutter

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to have a speech problem that causes you to repeat the beginning sound of some words

stutter

noun

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

: a speech problem that causes someone to repeat the beginning sounds of some words

stutter

verb
stut·​ter | \ ˈstə-tər How to pronounce stutter (audio) \
stuttered; stuttering

Kids Definition of stutter

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to speak or say with involuntary repetition or interruption of sounds

stutter

noun

Kids Definition of stutter (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act or an instance of speaking with involuntary repetition or interruption
stut·​ter | \ ˈstət-ər How to pronounce stutter (audio) \

Medical Definition of stutter

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to speak with involuntary disruption or blocking of speech (as by repetition or prolongation of vocal sounds)

transitive verb

: to say, speak, or sound with or as if with a stutter

stutter

noun

Medical Definition of stutter (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of stuttering
2 : the habitual tendency to stutter had a mild stutter : stuttering sense 2

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on stutter

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for stutter

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stutter

Spanish Central: Translation of stutter

Nglish: Translation of stutter for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stutter for Arabic Speakers

Comments on stutter

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

WORD OF THE DAY

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

May 2020 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a blooming wisteria tree
  • Which is a synonym of exiguous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!