One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1(of a bird) sing softly and with a succession of constantly changing notes.‘larks were warbling in the trees’
- ‘That time of year when the soul can't help but be gladdened by the returning flocks of small, colourful creatures darting about the streets and lawns of Cambridge, warbling incomprehensibly.’
- ‘Then a turf cutter sat on the side of the bank and ate his repost to the song of the Lark, as it warbled above him in the clear sky.’
- ‘As the weather heats up this summer, frog song may be as easy to hear as bird warbling.’
- ‘There were popping sounds, birds warbling, half-stifled cries - of rigmarole of street sounds that just totally entranced me.’
- ‘Somewhere in the branches above her head, a thrush warbled happily, and it was all that Hope could do not to join in.’
- ‘Across the river birds warble in the bush - wood pigeons, tui and native parrots flit among the nikau palms and kahikatea.’
- ‘The only other bird we saw using the houses was a small brown fellow warbling merrily for no one in particular.’
- ‘Anyway, Mary tells me that the Cuckoo has been warbling outside her door in Ardrahan for some time now and the swallows have come back to old Kinvara.’
- 1.1 (of a person) sing in a trilling or quavering voice.‘he warbled in an implausible soprano’
- ‘Those were the things I mulled over that night on the gravel bar as my classmate strummed his six-string and we all joined in from time to time, warbling as only a bunch of half-tipsy songsters can warble.’
- ‘As the chorus finished Kyle jumped out of the crowd and finished with a solo on the final ‘Happy birthday to you’ of the song, warbling ridiculously, making her laugh harder at him.’
- ‘After more than forty years on the road, Ronnie Drew can still warble a song, tell a yarn and play an audience as he proved in the wonderful atmosphere of Stage 2 in The Forum on Saturday night last.’
- ‘After warbling a couple high notes in ‘I Will Always Love You,’ she stopped once again and began singing ‘American Pie.’’
- ‘Or those interminable songs delivered with an earnest warble to three chords on a guitar that warned a complacent world that ‘the new times are a-comin’.’
- ‘Her voice warbled once more as she caught his hand, holding it gently in her lap with both hands.’
- ‘In fact, I'm probably pretty close to how old Jessel was back then, when he'd be dragged out of mothballs to warble outmoded old songs in that peculiar nasal delivery of his.’
- ‘Rina's voice rose to a frantic warbling, her face turning red as well.’
- ‘She doesn't sing, she chokes, she trills, she warbles.’
- ‘The callers recounted tedious vows, painfully off-key songs warbled by bride and groom, the inclusion of the groom's dog in the ceremony.’
- ‘In the singing department, his Bolan-esque warble is as expressive as it is idiosyncratic and lyrically, I somehow can't see him being one to slave over a couplet.’
- ‘‘Veni, Veni, Venias,’ instead of ending with a single held note, as written, ends with the chorus warbling melismatically between two.’
- ‘Equally enjoyable's Daltrey's sparkling, humorous take on ‘Mack The Knife’, complete with musical theatre ladies warbling away.’
- ‘Soon the sounds of tuning instruments filled the afternoon, then the accordion warbled out its organ-like notes.’
- ‘Willie Nelson is warbling through the stereo and the sun is slipping fast into the Texas Hill Country.’
- ‘She slowly let go of his hand and walked behind the makeshift stage, where a woman was warbling out a country song.’
- ‘In the Outer Hebrides they still sing a very ancient kind of unaccompanied plainchant - first the minister starts warbling, then the congregation joins in, ululating and carolling, nasally.’
- ‘The audio foreground, however, is dominated by the insipid, warbling, and off-key sound of Gareth Gates murdering a late 1970s disco classic.’
- ‘The episode is simply a lot of fun, as Fred and Barney unknowingly get help from Ann-Margaret in auditioning for a show she is putting on, and she even gets to warble a pair of songs herself.’
- ‘The B - 52's chirp and warble their way through an energetic three-song set as only they can.’
A warbling sound or utterance.‘through the wall came a faint warble’‘the warble of the phone’
trill, trilling, song, birdsong, cry, warbling, chirp, chirping, chirrup, chirruping, chirr, chirring, cheep, cheeping, twitter, twittering, tweet, tweeting, whistle, whistling, chatter, chattering, squeak, squeaking, pipe, piping, peep, peeping, call, callingView synonyms
- ‘The only way tell is by the sound of Johnston's voice - his tenor warble appears in various stages of refinement on the fourteen tracks here.’
- ‘He was singing; the song was a buzzy warble followed by a trill.’
- ‘Problem is, this pushes Mandell's vaguely tenuous, aloof vocals up front, affected twangs, warbles and all.’
- ‘His falsetto warbles, a bit different than his normal voice, are only a background on the latter, third behind Kweli's voice and the amazing production.’
- ‘Not a single warble, tweet, or chirp can be heard - nothing but the faint buzz of insects, the passing hum of a distant airplane, and the hushed rustle of the wind.’
Late Middle English (as a noun in the sense ‘melody’): from Old Northern French werble (noun), werbler (verb), of Germanic origin; related to whirl.
1A swelling or abscess beneath the skin on the back of cattle, horses, and other mammals, caused by the presence of the larva of a warble fly.
- ‘The Minister urged herdowners to inspect all their cattle for warbles on a regular and systematic basis from now until August.’
- ‘Deregulating the rendering process and/or dosing cattle for warbles with organo-phosphates gave us mad cow disease.’
- 1.1 The larva of the warble fly.
- ‘According to these battle-scarred veterans, the best way to get rid of a larva is to plaster a thick piece of bacon on your skin above the breathing hole of a larva's warble.’
Late Middle English: of uncertain origin.
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