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palpitate

[pal-pi-teyt]
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verb (used without object), pal·pi·tat·ed, pal·pi·tat·ing.
  1. to pulsate with unusual rapidity from exertion, emotion, disease, etc.; flutter: His heart palpitated wildly.
  2. to pulsate; quiver; throb; tremble.
verb (used with object), pal·pi·tat·ed, pal·pi·tat·ing.
  1. to cause to pulsate or tremble.

Origin of palpitate

1615–25; < Latin palpitātus, past participle of palpitāre to pulsate, frequentative of palpāre to stroke. See palpus, -ate1
Related formspal·pi·tat·ing·ly, adverbun·pal·pi·tat·ing, adjective

Synonym study

1. See pulsate.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for palpitate

Historical Examples

  • Nor was his the only heart whom that cheery sound caused to palpitate.

    A Dog with a Bad Name

    Talbot Baines Reed

  • He had no right to palpitate over the picture of an unknown beauty.

  • The air seemed to palpitate with these new and agitating feelings.

  • My heart began to palpitate with dread of some unknown danger.

    Wieland; or The Transformation

    Charles Brockden Brown

  • It seems to palpitate with a fragrance that ravishes the senses.

    Alaska

    Ella Higginson


British Dictionary definitions for palpitate

palpitate

verb (intr)
  1. (of the heart) to beat with abnormal rapidity
  2. to flutter or tremble
Derived Formspalpitant, adjectivepalpitation, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin palpitāre to throb, from palpāre to stroke
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

Word Origin and History for palpitate

v.

1620s, from Latin palpitatus, past participle of palpitare "to throb, flutter" (see palpitation). Related: Palpitated; palpitating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper