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[nat-er] /ˈnæt ər/
verb (used without object)
to talk incessantly; chatter.
a conversation; chat.
Origin of natter
First recorded in 1820-30; variant of earlier gnatter < ? Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for nattering
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A nattering distinction, which he seldom lavished upon his visitors.

    The Honor of the Name Emile Gaboriau
  • I have drawn no nattering portrait of him—but, like other men, he has his good points.

    The Rock of the Lion Molly Elliot Seawell
  • But I set no count on his nattering so long as I could keep him alive.

    More Tales of the Ridings Frederic Moorman
  • How is a lad to enjoy the society of his mother if she is perpetually nagging and nattering at him?

    Human Intercourse Philip Gilbert Hamerton
  • But to these nattering appearances it was dangerous to yield implicit confidence.

  • This description of the state of things in Scotland is far from nattering; but it is substantially correct.

  • He refused also the nattering offer of entering the Church of England and of receiving a comfortable "living."

    English Literature William J. Long
  • “O–oh, Monsieur Parole,” I exclaimed at his nattering category of my attributes, almost blushing.

    She and I, Volume 2 John Conroy Hutcheson
British Dictionary definitions for nattering


(intransitive) to talk idly and at length; chatter or gossip
prolonged idle chatter or gossip
Derived Forms
natterer, noun
Word Origin
C19: changed from gnatter to grumble, of imitative origin; compare Low German gnatteren
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 nattering



"grumble, chatter aimlessly, nag," 1829, northern England dialect variant of gnatter "to chatter, grumble," earlier (18c.) "to nibble away," probably of echoic origin. Related: Nattered; nattering. As a noun, 1866, from the verb.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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