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verb (used without object)
  1. to cry or scream loudly and violently: The hungry baby began to squall.
verb (used with object)
  1. to utter in a screaming tone.
  1. the act or sound of squalling: The baby's squall was heard next door.

Origin of squall2

1625–35; perhaps < Old Norse skvala shriek, cry; compare Swedish, Norwegian skvala splash, stream
Related formssquall·er, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for squaller

Historical Examples

  • A squall on the sea is a stress of weather, and a squaller on land is a songstress.

    The New Pun Book

    Thomas A. Brown and Thomas Joseph Carey

British Dictionary definitions for squaller


  1. a sudden strong wind or brief turbulent storm
  2. any sudden commotion or show of temper
  1. (intr) to blow in a squall
Derived Formssquallish, adjectivesqually, adjective

Word Origin

C18: perhaps a special use of squall ²


  1. (intr) to cry noisily; yell
  1. a shrill or noisy yell or howl
Derived Formssqualler, noun

Word Origin

C17: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Icelandic skvala to shout; see squeal
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 squaller



"sudden, violent gust of wind," 1719, originally nautical, probably from a Scandinavian source (cf. Norwegian skval "sudden rush of water," Swedish skvala "to gush, pour down"), probably ultimately a derivative of squall (v.).



"cry out loudly," 1630s, probably from Old Norse skvala "to cry out," of imitative origin (cf. squeal). Related: Squalled; squalling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

squaller in Science


  1. A brief, sudden, violent windstorm, often accompanied by rain or snow. A squall is said to occur if a wind having a sustained speed of 40 km (25 mi) per hour lasts at least 1 minute and then decreases rapidly. See also squall line.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.