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Nov 29, 2016
This week’s theme
Onomatopoeic words

This week’s words
gnar
cackle
susurrate
blubber
chunter

blue-winged kookaburra
Blue-winged kookaburra
Photo: Mark Helle

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A.Word.A.Day
with Anu Garg

cackle

PRONUNCIATION:
(KAK-uhl)

MEANING:
verb intr.: 1. To make the sharp broken noise such as a hen does after laying an egg.
2. To laugh in a shrill manner.
3. To chatter.

noun: 1. The sharp broken noise of a hen after laying an egg.
2. Shrill laughter.
3. Chatter.

ETYMOLOGY:
From Middle English cakelen (to cackle), of imitative origin. Earliest documented use: 1225.

USAGE:
“Mrs Clinton, an experienced and articulate politician, has a calm and capable delivery in small settings. But she is less comfortable on the stump, especially in the current hot-and-bothered American political climate, where a politician is expected to signal that they are mad as hell and not going to take it any more. When Mrs Clinton attempts this, with her voice high and loud at its peaks, she is called ‘shrill’ and ‘hectoring’, while her laugh is a ‘cackle’ -- words rarely aimed at men.”
War of Words; The Economist (London, UK); Jul 16, 2016.

See more usage examples of cackle in Vocabulary.com’s dictionary.

A THOUGHT FOR TODAY:
The great thing about getting older is that you don't lose all the other ages you've been. -Madeleine L'Engle, writer (29 Nov 1918-2007)

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