vibrate

verb
vi·​brate | \ ˈvī-ˌbrāt How to pronounce vibrate (audio) , especially British vī-ˈbrāt\
vibrated; vibrating

Definition of vibrate

transitive verb

1 : to swing or move to and fro
2 : to emit with or as if with a vibratory motion
3 : to mark or measure by oscillation a pendulum vibrating seconds
4 : to set in vibration

intransitive verb

1a : to move to and fro or from side to side : oscillate
b : fluctuate, vacillate vibrate between two choices
2 : to have an effect as or as if of vibration music, when soft voices die, vibrates in the memory— P. B. Shelley
3 : to be in a state of vibration : quiver
4 : to respond sympathetically : thrill vibrate to the opportunity

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Synonyms for vibrate

Synonyms

agitate, bucket, convulse, jerk, jiggle, joggle, jolt, jounce, judder [chiefly British], quake, quiver, shake, shudder, wobble (also wabble)

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Choose the Right Synonym for vibrate

swing, sway, oscillate, vibrate, fluctuate, waver, undulate mean to move from one direction to its opposite. swing implies a movement of something attached at one end or one side. the door suddenly swung open sway implies a slow swinging or teetering movement. trees swaying in the breeze oscillate stresses a usually regular alternation of direction. an oscillating fan vibrate suggests the rapid oscillation of an elastic body under stress or impact. the vibrating strings of a piano fluctuate suggests constant irregular changes of level, intensity, or value. fluctuating interest rates waver stresses irregular motion suggestive of reeling or tottering. the exhausted runner wavered before collapsing undulate suggests a gentle wavelike motion. an undulating sea of grass

Examples of vibrate in a Sentence

The car started to vibrate. When you blow into the instrument, the air vibrates the reed.

Recent Examples on the Web

The idea behind vibrating foam rollers and other electronic massage devices is that the vibrations may help alter our perception of pain, says Reavy. Amy Marturana, SELF, "How to Shop for a Foam Roller," 30 Mar. 2019 For now, the Levi’s jacket features touch inputs and a tag that blinks and vibrates in sync with your phone. Amy Verner, Vogue, "The Future of Smart Fabric Is in This Fashion Historian’s Hands," 6 Mar. 2019 His novels are constructed, with intricate beauty, from images and scenes that don’t so much flow together as cling together in vibrating, tensile fashion. BostonGlobe.com, "Michael Ondaatje crafts a superb wartime mystery," 3 May 2018 But the toothbrushes are distinct, primarily because the Oral-B has an oscillating, rather than vibrating, head. Rachel Z. Arndt, Popular Mechanics, "The Quest for the Best Electric Toothbrush," 13 Nov. 2017 That same free spirit vibrated throughout the eclectic crowd decked in Barbarella-esque sequin capes, futuristic jumpsuits, and technicolor space boots. Vogue, "The St. Louis Contemporary Art Museum Hosts its Biennial Dada Ball & Bash," 8 Mar. 2019 Embedded with a real-time monitoring system, the bridge will be able to detect vibrating wire stress and strain with high precision. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Made of Giant Concrete Blocks, the World's Longest 3D-Printed Bridge Was Built in 18 Days," 28 Jan. 2019 Samsung received 733 reports of washing machines that excessively vibrated or had the top come off completely from the washing machine chassis, or base frame. Cory Stieg, Good Housekeeping, "UPDATE: Samsung Top-Load Washing Machines Recalled Due to Risk of Impact Injuries," 4 Nov. 2016 So, your phone will get a notification, and the jacket’s signature sleeve tag will also blink and vibrate. Dani Deahl, The Verge, "Google and Levi’s smart jacket can now warn you if you’re about to leave your phone behind," 9 Dec. 2018

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

1616, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for vibrate

Latin vibratus, past participle of vibrare to brandish, wave, rock — more at wipe

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Statistics for vibrate

Last Updated

16 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for vibrate

The first known use of vibrate was in 1616

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More Definitions for vibrate

vibrate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of vibrate

: to move back and forth or from side to side with very short, quick movements

vibrate

verb
vi·​brate | \ ˈvī-ˌbrāt How to pronounce vibrate (audio) \
vibrated; vibrating

Kids Definition of vibrate

: to move or cause to move back and forth or from side to side very quickly

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More from Merriam-Webster on vibrate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with vibrate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for vibrate

Spanish Central: Translation of vibrate

Nglish: Translation of vibrate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of vibrate for Arabic Speakers

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