- to make or emit a sharp sound like that of the letter s prolonged, as a snake does, or as steam does when forced under pressure through a small opening.
- to express disapproval or contempt by making this sound: The audience hissed when the actor forgot his lines.
- to express disapproval of by hissing: The audience hissed the controversial play.
- to silence or drive away by hissing (usually followed by away, down, etc.): They hissed down the author when he tried to speak.
- to utter with a hiss.
- a hissing sound, especially one made in disapproval.
Origin of hiss
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- Alger,1904–96, U.S. public official, accused of espionage 1948 and imprisoned for perjury 1950–54.
Examples from the Web for hiss
When the hiss of reptiles turns to words, you hear something that you have never heard and will never forget.They Saw It Coming
December 30, 2008
Back in 2005, for instance, he argued that the U.S. housing bubble was starting to hiss badly.The Five Financial Gurus You Can Still Trust
October 19, 2008
Gor, I—I liked the fun, and so I thumpt away, and hiss'd as lustily as the best of 'em.The Contrast
Soften the burning flame so that it is just barely beginning to hiss.The Automobile Storage Battery
O. A. Witte
The frozen fountains now plash, and hiss, and sparkle in the sun.The Daltons, Volume II (of II)
Charles James Lever
To hiss the curate, 'tis a ticklish sort of a job after that.A Bit O' Love (Fourth Series Plays)
The last words were spoken in a whisper, emphasized into almost a hiss.David Elginbrod
- a voiceless fricative sound like that of a prolonged s
- such a sound uttered as an exclamation of derision, contempt, etc, esp by an audience or crowd
- electronics receiver noise with a continuous spectrum, caused by thermal agitation, shot noise, etc
- an exclamation of derision or disapproval
- (intr) to produce or utter a hiss
- (tr) to express with a hiss, usually to indicate derision or anger
- (tr) to show derision or anger towards (a speaker, performer, etc) by hissing
- Alger. 1904–96, US government official: imprisoned (1950–54) for perjury in connection with alleged espionage activities
Word Origin and History for hiss
late 14c., of imitative origin. Johnson wrote, "it is remarkable, that this word cannot be pronounced without making the noise which it signifies." Related: Hissed; hissing.
1510s, from hiss (v.).