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[lisp] /lɪsp/
a speech defect consisting in pronouncing s and z like or nearly like the th- sounds of thin and this, respectively.
Phonetics. any unconventional articulation of the sibilants, as the pronunciation of s and z with the tongue between the teeth (lingual protrusion lisp) close to or touching the upper front teeth (dental lisp) or raised so that the breath is emitted laterally (lateral lisp)
the act, habit, or sound of lisping.
verb (used with or without object)
to pronounce or speak with a lisp.
to speak imperfectly, especially in a childish manner.
Origin of lisp
before 1100; Middle English wlispen, lipsen, Old English āwlyspian; akin to Dutch lisp(el)en, German lispeln, Norwegian leipsa
Related forms
lisper, noun
lispingly, adverb
unlisping, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for lisped
Historical Examples
  • "A celebrated German writer," lisped the modest Miss Macdonald.

    Vivian Grey Earl of Beaconsfield, Benjamin Disraeli
  • "The Duke shall be informed of the value of your learning," lisped the Cardinal.

    The Strolling Saint Raphael Sabatini
  • "Just to see the cedars, or Clorinda's grotto," lisped out a female voice.

    Luttrell Of Arran Charles James Lever
  • "I vote that we are all Tyrolese peasanths," lisped the fat and dumpy Mrs. Malone.

    Roland Cashel Charles James Lever
  • "Buonos noches," lisped out Margeritta, with a slight curtsy.

  • She was not aware that she lisped, and that this betrayed her.

    The Memoires of Casanova, Complete Jacques Casanova de Seingalt
  • He took precociously to rhyming: like Pope, he lisped in numbers, for the numbers came.

    The Book-Hunter

    John Hill Burton
  • “I beg your pardon,” lisped the child, thinking she ought to speak.

    The Heiress of Wyvern Court

    Emilie Searchfield
  • Snuggling closer, he lisped back in perfect English, "Eric's tired."

    Lords of the North A. C. Laut
  • "My name is Sarah, but mamma called me Sadie," lisped the child.

    Pirate Gold

    Frederic Jesup Stimson
British Dictionary definitions for lisped


the articulation of s and z like or nearly like the th sounds in English thin and then respectively
the habit or speech defect of pronouncing s and z in this manner
the sound of a lisp in pronunciation
to use a lisp in the pronunciation of (speech)
to speak or pronounce imperfectly or haltingly
Derived Forms
lisper, noun
lisping, adjective, noun
lispingly, adverb
Word Origin
Old English āwlispian, from wlisp lisping (adj), of imitative origin; related to Old High German lispen


a high-level computer-programming language suitable for work in artificial intelligence
Word Origin
C20: from lis(t) p(rocessing)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for lisped



late Old English awlyspian "to lisp," from wlisp (adj.) "lisping," probably of imitative origin (cf. Middle Dutch, Old High German lispen, Danish læspe, Swedish läspa). Related: Lisped; lisping.



1620s, from lisp (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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lisped in Medicine

lisp (lĭsp)
A speech defect or mannerism characterized by mispronunciation of the sounds (s) and (z) as (th) and (th). v. lisped, lisp·ing, lisps
To speak with a lisp.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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