Definition of splutter in English:


Line breaks: splut|ter
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.


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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.


late 17th century: imitative; compare with sputter.



More 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.


More 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.


More 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.

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Word of the day retroflex
Pronunciation: ˈrɛtrə(ʊ)flɛks
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