Definition of splutter in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈsplʌtə/


[no object]
1Make a series of short explosive spitting or choking sounds: she coughed and spluttered, tears coursing down her face
More example sentences
  • ‘It wasn't much, around seven million,’ she paused as the Inspector choked and spluttered.
  • The man choked and spluttered, but didn't answer.
  • As the Boss choked and spluttered for air he fished in his pocket for something.
1.1 [reporting verb] Say something rapidly, indistinctly, and with a spitting sound, as a result of anger, embarrassment, or another strong emotion: [with object]: he began to splutter excuses [with direct speech]: ‘How dare you?’ she spluttered
More example sentences
  • ‘Kara - Kara Sarris,’ he finally spluttered the words out.
  • That didn't matter, though, as the infuriated lord proceeded to splutter his way through a listing of the problems.
  • ‘You,’ he splutters, turning red in the face, ‘you've drugged her!’
1.2 [with object] Spit (something) out from one’s mouth noisily and in small splashes: spluttering brackish water, he struggled to regain his feet
More example sentences
  • He splutters water as he tries to inhale more air.
  • Maybe it's the joy of playing it to friends who pride themselves on liking extreme music, and watching them splutter tea down their fronts.


A short explosive spitting or choking noise: the engine gave one final splutter and died a splutter of laughter
More example sentences
  • The words came out in short excited little splutters.
  • All this, including conversations à trois at cross-purposes, with three-way splutters, is supposed to make the play more interesting but merely makes it all the more annoying.
  • She nodded, understanding, ignoring Aaron's splutters of indignation.



Pronunciation: /ˈsplʌtərə/
Example sentences
  • So who else is sick of the coughers and splutterers and sweet wrapper rustlers who spoil concerts?
  • Ian and his companions stood their ground, pointed out that the splutterer could only request a withdrawal, and suggested he call the polis should arbitration be required.
  • Anyway, at least you were lucky and could have a good chuckle at all the wheezers and splutterers so I bet that made you feel on the side of the angels.


Example sentences
  • Both are power-hungry cowards, Alberich a spluttering bully, Wotan a silent observer.
  • With film-soundtrack strings, spluttering trumpets and a creeping, unsettling inertia, it also happens to be their most musically adventurous record to date.
  • The traditional marches played (somewhat out of tune) by the village band, the singing of a family around a spluttering harmonium, the medleys of patriotic melodies offered on festive occasions - all of these were to enter into his music.


Example sentences
  • At half past twelve we dropped anchor a mile and a half from the fort, which the Prince Regent saluted splutteringly with six shots.
  • He coughed splutteringly as he was just getting over a nasty case of the sniffles.
  • It seemed a long way to a seven-year-old but it was only fifteen yards; besides you had a minder on either side of you in case you lost your nerve and sank splutteringly.


Late 17th century: imitative; compare with sputter.

Words that rhyme with splutter

abutter, aflutter, butter, Calcutta, clutter, constructor, cutter, declutter, flutter, gutter, mutter, nutter, scutter, shutter, sputter, strutter, stutter, utter

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: splut|ter

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