Definition of ululate in English:


Line breaks: ulu|late
Pronunciation: /ˈjuːljʊleɪt
, ˈʌl-/


[no object]
Howl or wail as an expression of strong emotion, typically grief: women were ululating as the body was laid out
More example sentences
  • A line of police cars screamed by, lights flashing, sirens wailing and ululating.
  • We may weep a little rather than ululate, gnash our teeth or wail to the rhythm of a thousand drums.
  • Women greet each other by ululating, or making a high pitched sound by trilling the tongue.


early 17th century: from Latin ululat- 'howled, shrieked', from the verb ululare, of imitative origin.



More example sentences
  • From the floor a ululant howling roared.
  • While we allow wolves and foxes to be ululant, the head posture is an SCA invention.


Pronunciation: /-ˈleɪʃ(ə)n/
More example sentences
  • Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe - reviled by the west - was greeted by screams, clapping and ululation in Dar es Salaam on Monday at the opening of a summit of southern African countries.
  • In the days to follow, Charles would argue that this high-pitched ululation was the real reason for the crash.
  • Why does Danny Elfman's music score erupt with Arabic-sounding ululations if not to make us think of the Middle East?

Definition of ululate in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

More on ululate

Nearby words

Translate ululate

into Spanish
Word of the day oleaginous
Pronunciation: ˌəʊlɪˈadʒɪnəs
rich in, covered with, or producing oil; oily