Definition of crackle in English:


Line breaks: crackle
Pronunciation: /ˈkrak(ə)l


[no object]
  • 1Make a rapid succession of short sharp noises: the fire suddenly crackled and spat sparks
    More example sentences
    • The fire crackled and sparked, sending small bits of flame into the crisp night air.
    • The wind sang its gentle desert lullaby, and the prisoners' fires crackled and snapped quietly.
    • Hunkered down in my studies, I'd hear the trailer suddenly begin to crackle like a beer can crushed in a fist.
    sizzle, frizzle, fizz, hiss, crack, snap, sputter
    technical decrepitate
    rare crepitate
  • 1.1Give a sense of great tension or animation: attraction and antagonism were crackling between them
    More example sentences
    • She told him how she sensed the tension crackling between us on the set.
    • The manager seemed cool, calm and collected as the place crackled with excitement and tension.
    • The former had called, but the conversations had been brief and crackling with tension.


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  • 1A sound made up of a rapid succession of short sharp noises: there was a crackle and a whine from the microphone
    More example sentences
    • Chest examination revealed fine late inspiratory crackles with otherwise normal breath sounds.
    • There is lots of white noise in the track - crackles and pops that indicate age and handling mishaps.
    • The music sometimes sounds a bit wobbly, and pops and crackles are heard throughout the mixes.
  • 2 [mass noun] A pattern of minute surface cracks on paintwork, varnish, glazed ceramics, or glass.
    More example sentences
    • She also creates crackle finishes, which makes the frame truly customized.
    • Vary the thickness of your crackle glaze until you obtain the desired appearance.
    • The crackle varnish of recent years provides a geological quality probably inspired by the Porcelain series of works by a 1990s collaborator, Heather Straka.



adjective (cracklier, crackliest)
More example sentences
  • I had to cast a spell, which required making claw-hands and issuing some sort of crackly lightning sounds.
  • I remember hearing the speech of King George V on a crackly radio.
  • So far I've teased three clips out, and they're not just fuzzy and crackly, they're very small.


late Middle English: from crack + -le4.

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a small amount; a little