Definition of tremble in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈtrɛmb(ə)l/


[no object]
1Shake involuntarily, typically as a result of anxiety, excitement, or frailty: Isobel was trembling with excitement
More example sentences
  • She could hear her raging heart beat wildly in her ears and she trembled with excitement and anxiety.
  • And he smote the air with his fists, and believers trembled with excitement.
  • I trembled with excitement as my ship rumbled to life.
shake, shake like a leaf, quiver, twitch, palpitate;
quaver, waver
rare tremor, quave
1.1Be in a state of extreme apprehension: [with infinitive]: I tremble to think that we could ever return to conditions like these
More example sentences
  • It made him tremble to think that the people may be allowed to make this decision.
be afraid, be fearful, be filled with fear, be frightened, be apprehensive, worry, be anxious, be in a state of anxiety, shake in one's shoes;
quail, shrink from, blench from, blanch from
informal be in a blue funk, be all of a tremble, be all of a quiver
1.2Shake or quiver slightly: the earth trembled beneath their feet
More example sentences
  • I looked around with amazement as the earth trembled beneath my feet.
  • The call made her insides chill and stopped her in her tracks as the earth trembled slightly.
  • The bleached earth trembled beneath the soles of my boots.
shake, shudder, judder, wobble, rock, vibrate, move, sway, totter, teeter


1A trembling feeling, movement, or sound: there was a slight tremble in his voice
More example sentences
  • She felt it with a tremble of happiness and hope as her dreary eyes watched the clouds turn from pink to white, the sky from orange to blue…
  • There was a slight tremble just before that which had a magnitude of around 1.1.
  • Jennifer grabbed her car door for support, and was heated with the evanescence of the shock wave, a slight tremble of the ground.
tremor, shake, shakiness, trembling, quiver, twitch, twitchiness
2 (the trembles) informal A physical or emotional condition marked by trembling.
Example sentences
  • In his situation, many a man has come down with the trembles.
2.1 another term for milk sickness.


all of a tremble

informal Extremely agitated or excited.
Example sentences
  • ‘I'm all of a tremble - I've gone all wishy-washy,’ said Mrs Pepper after the Prince had left.
  • I declare I was all of a tremble for fear Mr. Box should come in before Mr. Cox went out.
  • This coincidence threw the prophet almost into a frenzy, and the poor people were all of a tremble.



Pronunciation: /ˈtrɛmb(ə)lɪŋli/
Example sentences
  • Yet again, O thrice great Comus, I tremblingly approach you, and humbly prostrate before your Olympian eminence, I express my renewed and tearful regret that I must once more decline your proffered invitation.
  • Equal numbers had a favourable and unfavourable opinion of her; more tremblingly for her future ambitions, 76% believe she is ‘power hungry’.
  • The problem is that these people are so tremblingly aware of what they themselves think that they cannot be trusted to hear what others say, or to remember it clearly, or to report it correctly half-an-hour later, or even two minutes later.


Middle English (as a verb): from Old French trembler, from medieval Latin tremulare, from Latin tremulus (see tremulous).

Words that rhyme with tremble

assemble, dissemble, Kemble, resemble

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: trem¦ble

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