Definition of chatter in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtʃatə/


[no object]
1Talk informally about unimportant matters: she was chattering about her holiday
More example sentences
  • There were a couple of students outside, playing a quick game, or chattering before school started, and she couched down, and watched them.
  • The door into the lobby opened again, the sound of voices chattering excitedly.
  • Water falls were alive with the crashing of water on rock, rivers trickled, birds sang, people chattered, lava boiled and fires crackled.
1.1(Of a bird, monkey, or machine) make a series of short, quick high-pitched sounds: parrots chattered in the sunlight
More example sentences
  • Around her, birds chattered happily to each other, and the early morning sounds of traffic could be faintly heard in the distance.
  • The monkey chattered fearfully and quickly jumped back into the midst of the tree leaves.
  • In the marshland may the fish and birds chatter.
1.2(Of a person’s teeth) click repeatedly together from cold or fear: his teeth were chattering
More example sentences
  • Her teeth chattered together and her face was pale from the cold.
  • His teeth chattered together so violently that he feared they would break.
  • In summer, we went swimming in the Barrow every day, and swam until we were blue with the cold, our teeth chattering as we practised for competitions.


[mass noun]
1Informal talk: he was full of inconsequential but amusing chatter
More example sentences
  • She'd kept up an almost incessant stream of chatter and commentary during the whole of the train ride from London, and then in the taxi to the dock.
  • A similar need to divert the audience at every instant seems to motivate the film's incessant stream of chatter.
  • No matter what he did, he couldn't block the incessant chatter.
chat, talk, gossip, chit-chat, chitter-chatter, patter, jabbering, jabber, prattling, prattle, babbling, babble, tittle-tattle, tattle, blathering, blather, blethering, blether, rambling, gibbering;
conversation, dialogue, discourse
informal gab, gabber, yak, yackety-yak, yabbering, yammering, yattering, yapping, jawing, chewing the fat, chewing the rag, confab
British informal chinwagging, nattering, wittering, waffling, waffle, chuntering, rabbiting on
formal confabulation
archaic clack, claver, twaddle, twattle
rare colloquy
1.1Electronic or radio communication, especially between individuals being monitored by a government agency as a result of suspected involvement in terrorist activity or espionage: officials refused to comment on a news report that the patrols were resumed due to increased Internet chatter
More example sentences
  • I think it's important to note that, yes, they have seen an uptick in chatter among these groups.
  • It is understood that the threat state was raised because of the increases in "terrorist chatter" picked up by GCHQ in the last month.
  • Officials warned of chatter hinting at further strikes, as the homeland security secretary announced US-bound passengers would see increased airport security screening and armed marshals on flights.
2A series of short, quick high-pitched sounds: the starlings' constant chatter
More example sentences
  • This shape is musical: along with typing in a nickname of her choice, each chatter is attributed a sound.
  • I awoke in the real dead of night to the sounds of muffled chatter and hurried movements both in front and behind.
  • The silence (other than the constant chatter of the television) is deadly.
2.1Undesirable vibration in a mechanism: the wipers should operate without chatter
More example sentences
  • The direct-drive AC spindle eliminates the use of gears or belts to drive the spindle and reduces vibration and chatter.


the chattering classes

British derogatory Intellectual or artistic people considered as a social group given to the expression of liberal opinions: the politically correct voice of the chattering classes
More example sentences
  • The west Midlands campaign, limited so far to the Birmingham elite and chattering classes, has been partly fuelled by a sense that north Wales is doing well out of devolution.
  • But maybe class is not an issue for them because they are both now so firmly part of that powerful caste, the chattering classes.
  • This preoccupation with what the neighbours think is a classic example of the middle class morality that the chattering classes claim to despise.



Example sentences
  • My nose is going to be red and sniffly and my eyes are going to be watery and my teeth are going to be chattery and I won't be numb at all.
  • It amazes me every time I come to stay here how loud and chattery the birds are.
  • Besides, he looked kind of odd in a room full of chattery people.


Middle English: imitative.

Words that rhyme with chatter

attar, batter, bespatter, clatter, flatter, hatter, Kenyatta, latter, matamata, matter, natter, patter, platter, ratter, regatta, satyr, scatter, shatter, smatter, spatter, splatter, yatter

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: chat|ter

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