Definition of squeak in English:



  • 1A short, high-pitched sound or cry.

    ‘the door opened with a slight squeak’
    • ‘It made short purring sounds, mixed with squeaks, then it vanished.’
    • ‘The unmistakable sound of a mouse squeak caused her to jump and trip over the darkness in trying to find the stairs.’
    • ‘The blind man began singing and talking as we passed by, the two sounds rolling together into squeaks, grunts, and held notes.’
    • ‘We made our way through the cool, atmospheric turns of the colleges, the worn wood and gray stones reflecting the piping of voices and squeaks of rusty bicycles.’
    • ‘Government eavesdroppers at Yorkshire's own GCHQ listening station were baffled when they began picking up high-pitched squeaks from the base's forest of aerial masts.’
    • ‘The second best basketball sound is the squeak of new shoes on a basketball floor.’
    • ‘I've listened closely to the sweaty badminton and discovered there is no sound apart from the squeak of tennis shoes on plastic flooring.’
    • ‘Almost as soon as we dropped into the water we were deafened by a series of high-pitched clicks and squeaks and whistles, and about 20 dolphins turned up.’
    • ‘Saphrin looked up at the sound of the squeak in the door.’
    • ‘There was a high-pitched squeak and one of the pipes broke away from the wall, and Armstrong smelled ozone.’
    • ‘Grover Norquist, on the other hand, speaks like a man who had all the delight squeezed out of him years ago, leaving him with nothing in his voice but a high-pitched squeak of disdain.’
    • ‘He caught a slight squeak of surprise from the first speaker as his three stalkers gave chase.’
    • ‘I tried to sound like it was just casual conversation but I knew there was a slight squeak in my voice that my mom had to have caught with her natural mother instincts.’
    • ‘It was a most undignified noise that sounded like a squeak to her ears.’
    • ‘Mice communicate with one another a great deal with ultrasonic sounds, and their squeaks can convey a lot of information.’
    • ‘A squeak sounded from the other room and moments later a middle-aged woman rolled out in a wheelchair.’
    • ‘Cleo managed a forced laugh, though it sounded more like a squeak.’
    • ‘My traitorous voice seemed to speak out of its own volition… and in a high-pitched squeak too.’
    • ‘Echolocation works like this: bats send out a series of high-pitched squeaks and then listen for its return.’
    • ‘‘I wasn't aware dinner had been served,’ I replied my voice sounding like a squeak when it came out.’
    peep, cheep, pipe, piping, squeal, tweet, warble, yelp, whimper
    screech, creak, scrape, grate, rasp, jar, groan
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[with negative]A single remark or communication.
      ‘I didn't hear a squeak from him for months’
      • ‘When we have been forced to reduce services we never heard a squeak of protest from Clare.’
      • ‘Still, even while driving in and out of Irish potholes, you'll hear no squeak or feel no squirm from the structure or fittings.’
      • ‘I mean to say, a sick half-sister that no one had heard a squeak out of for years?’
      • ‘Rupert Murdoch didn't exactly invent the ploy, whatever squeaks the modern Telegraph may emit in that direction.’
      • ‘The ranks will close even tighter and, despite the forensic criticisms, you won't hear a squeak in the party room.’
      • ‘Anyway - I haven't heard a squeak from Father since sending him the letter nearly a fortnight ago.’
      • ‘Hatchback it may be, but we never detected a single squeak, rattle or any sign of flexing.’
      • ‘And have we heard a squeak from the director with the verbal incontinence?’
      • ‘Now, we have been blessed with a good summer and very few people are saying squeak.’


  • 1Make a high-pitched sound or cry.

    ‘he oiled the hinges to stop them squeaking’
    • ‘He laughs recalling one stressful day when he ended up smoking in the back garden and heard the bathroom window squeaking open.’
    • ‘I heard about three cabinets squeak open and I got annoyed.’
    • ‘I walked through the wrought iron gates, the hinges squeaking.’
    • ‘There's no point sitting like a hedgehog squeaking in front of an enormous steamroller.’
    • ‘He sped off the freeway and through the neighborhood, then squeaked to a stop underneath the branches of the large tree in their front lawn.’
    • ‘She squeaked with gratitude, sounding oddly like the manager attempting a girlish treble.’
    • ‘The maintenance piggy bank got busted when the fuel pump squeaked to a full stop a couple of months back.’
    • ‘At the sound of the door squeaking slowly open, both of us rose and turned to face it.’
    • ‘It rises up to the narrow tidemark and with a swift flick of his wrists, it squeaks to a stop.’
    • ‘They are very peculiar and often roll around making odd squeaking and squawking sounds.’
    • ‘Just then, the sound of keys and the front door squeaking open met our ears.’
    • ‘Selena crouched next to him, her boots squeaking gently, the sound magnifying itself in his ears, echoing off each wall several times.’
    • ‘A second set of double doors leading into the gym stood open, and Christy heard the sounds of sneakers squeaking on the floor and voices talking and laughing.’
    • ‘It was the last place you would expect your dreams to come squeaking to a stop.’
    • ‘The tires that roll the bus down the road each day squeaked as they stopped in front of her.’
    • ‘And indeed, the sound of skin squeaking against glass distracted Mark from his melancholy for a moment.’
    • ‘The floors had stopped squeaking, and there was the sound of someone walking on the boards that didn't squeak.’
    • ‘The garden gate clicked, squeaked, and clicked again as it shut.’
    • ‘‘I'm a hustler, I'm a tiger,’ he squeaks, sounding nothing like a hustler or a tiger and everything like Joe Pasquale.’
    • ‘The drawers were hard to open and the bed squeaked.’
    peep, cheep, pipe, squeal, tweet, yelp, whimper
    screech, creak, scrape, grate, rasp, jar, groan
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[with direct speech]Say something in a nervous or excited high-pitched tone.
      ‘‘You're scaring me,’ she squeaked’
      • ‘Aidan squeaked, with an added stutter because he was suddenly nervous.’
      • ‘Queen Rose squeaked with excitement as she saw the small baby asleep in his crib.’
      • ‘Quick and mischievous Halflings squeaked happily at the excitement surrounding them.’
      • ‘His mother squeaked with excitement as she glanced back to look at her son.’
      • ‘I squeaked, my voice a tone higher than it should have been.’
      • ‘An excited voice squeaked from the other end of the phone.’
      • ‘Yap dashed in circles around the clearing, squeaking excitedly, although this was normal Yap behavior.’
      • ‘Fledgling gossip columnist Louella Parsons is there, played by Jennifer Tilly, squeaking and squawking her callow excitement at meeting so many A-list players.’
      • ‘Chelsea squeaked excitedly, ‘but anyhow, he asked me out like oh my god!’’
      • ‘Time was running short, but by striding my legs out as far as I could, I succeeded in saving at least minimal time, in addition to clearing small squeaking children from my way.’
      • ‘The first time I got the nerve to call a guy, when he picked up I was so nervous that I squeaked into the phone.’
      • ‘At the sound of his name, he squeaked excitedly and flew to Ruby…’
      • ‘Andy squeaked, suddenly looking very nervous.’
      • ‘When the others caught up with me, I was bouncing up and down and squeaking with excitement.’
      • ‘She squeaked, her voice breaking from her nervousness.’
      • ‘Ty squeaked again, this time out of a childlike excitement and pushed Bryan down before she landed a blow across his chest and stomach.’
      • ‘It was squeaking nervously and trying to claw its way out.’
      • ‘The arm zipped out, pointing at Sam, and positively quivered as he leaned toward it, squeaking an alarm.’
      • ‘She squeaked in triumph, excited that she might have finally found a way out of this mess.’
      • ‘I tend to get extremely nervous when speaking in public, so it will be a rare opportunity to see me sweat, shake, dribble incoherently and squeak a lot.’
    2. 1.2informal Inform on someone.
      ‘I have assured them that you will not squeak’
      denounce, give away, betray, incriminate, inculpate, report, tell the authorities about, tell the police about
      View synonyms
  • 2informal [with adverbial] Succeed in achieving something by a very narrow margin.

    ‘the bill squeaked through with just six votes to spare’
    • ‘Trucks also can't slow down as quickly as a car so think about that the next time you squeak in front of one and slam on the brakes.’
    • ‘We just squeaked into the play-offs, but I was excited about being a part of it all.’
    • ‘He is a brilliant if repulsive campaigner who's always squeaked through by making the other guy the issue.’
    • ‘Although Thomas squeaked through by a narrow margin in the Senate, several notable Republicans broke party ranks to vote against his nomination.’
    • ‘In fact, they'll be lucky if they can squeak themselves into the play-offs.’


Late Middle English (as a verb): imitative; compare with Swedish skväka croak, also with squeal and shriek. The noun dates from the early 17th century.