- to make explosive popping or sizzling sounds.
- to emit particles, sparks, etc., forcibly or explosively, especially accompanied by sputtering sounds.
- to eject particles of saliva, food, etc., from the mouth in a light spray, as when speaking angrily or excitedly.
- to utter or spit out words or sounds explosively or incoherently, as when angry or flustered.
- to emit (anything) forcibly and in small particles, as if by spitting: The fire sputtered cinders.
- to eject (saliva, food, etc.) in small particles explosively and involuntarily, as in excitement.
- to utter explosively and incoherently.
Origin of sputter
Examples from the Web for sputter
They continue to sputter up and down, without fully recovering.The Big Idea: Saving the World’s Most Important Fish
Kevin M. Bailey
August 9, 2013
If the only policy tool you allow yourself to use is tax credits, your reform agenda will sputter into ineffectuality.All Good Things...
June 3, 2013
Here's one graf: The Woodward reporting has caused the White House spin machine to sputter at a crucial time.Bob Woodward and Politico and the Worst of Washington
February 28, 2013
And racial divisions may become worse if the economy continues to sputter.A Racially Polarized Election Augurs Ill for Barack Obama’s Second Term
November 7, 2012
As his story moves into the present day, it starts to sputter.Drowning in Beeps
March 1, 2011
Debby marching down the hill, continued to sputter about the lost weeklies.Cy Whittaker's Place
Joseph C. Lincoln
I asked him if he filled his pies with a trowel and you ought to have heard him sputter.Mary-'Gusta
Joseph C. Lincoln
The helicopter man pulled the ignition-cord and a rocket began to sputter.Morale
Then all they'll do is buzz and sputter until the feedback is broken with the key.Meeting of the Board
Alan Edward Nourse
He switched on the electric current, and the apparatus began to sputter.The Silent Bullet
Arthur B. Reeve
- another word for splutter (def. 1), splutter (def. 2), splutter (def. 3)
- to undergo or cause to undergo a process in which atoms of a solid are removed from its surface by the impact of high-energy ions, as in a discharge tube
- to coat (a film of a metal) onto (a solid surface) by using this process
- the process or noise of sputtering
- incoherent stammering speech
- something that is ejected while sputtering
Word Origin and History for sputter
1590s, "to spit with explosive sounds," cognate with Dutch sputteren, West Frisian sputterje (see spout). Related: Sputtered; sputtering. The noun is attested from 1670s.