- to expel air from the lungs suddenly with a harsh noise, often involuntarily.
- (of an internal-combustion engine) to make a similar noise as a result of the failure of one or more cylinders to fire in sequence.
- to make a similar sound, as a machine gun firing in spurts.
- to expel by coughing (usually followed by up or out): to cough up phlegm.
- the act or sound of coughing.
- an illness characterized by frequent coughing.
- a sound similar to a cough, a machine gun, or an engine firing improperly.
- cough up, Slang.
- to relinquish, especially reluctantly; contribute; give.
- to blurt out; state, as by way of making a confession: After several hours of vigorous questioning by the police, he finally coughed up the information.
Origin of cough
Related Words for coughcold, whoop, bark, vomit, choke, hack, hem, ahem, croup, convulse, expectorate, hawk
Examples from the Web for cough
Contemporary Examples of cough
Some cough up preposterous jury awards, while others lay bare the egregious failures of the criminal justice system.How One Lawsuit Shows What’s Wrong With America
October 20, 2014
Will went on to say doctors believe a “sneeze or some cough” can spread Ebola.
It can spread through a sneeze, cough, sharing a beverage or speaking up close with someone who has the disease.
Brosseau said her views had nothing to do with Ebola spreading among the public at large through a sneeze or cough.
Get a flu shot, wash your hands, and cover your mouth when you cough.Parents’ Ebola Panic Is Taking Over My Clinic
October 15, 2014
Historical Examples of cough
Captain Smith affected a cough, and put his brown mare into a canter.Night and Morning, Complete
His father's cough had been bad all night, and this made his mother troubled and cross.
Mis' Eben Smith's got eight young ones down with the whoopin'-cough.Tiverton Tales
I then made him understand that I had a weak chest, and that the smoke made me cough.My Double Life
Here a cough interrupted him, and he paused and ran his hand through his hair.One Day's Courtship
- (intr) to expel air or solid matter from the lungs abruptly and explosively through the partially closed vocal chords
- (intr) to make a sound similar to this
- (tr) to utter or express with a cough or coughs
- (intr) slang to confess to a crime
- an act, instance, or sound of coughing
- a condition of the lungs or throat that causes frequent coughing
Word Origin for cough
Word Origin and History for cough
early 14c., coughen, probably in Old English, but not recorded, from Proto-Germanic *kokh- (with the rough "kh" of German or of Scottish loch; cf. Middle Dutch kochen, Middle High German kuchen). Onomatopoeic. Related: Coughed; coughing. As a noun from c.1300.
- To expel air from the lungs suddenly and noisily, often to keep the respiratory passages free of irritating material.
- The act of coughing.
- An illness marked by frequent coughing.
- The act of expelling air from the lungs suddenly and noisily, often to keep the respiratory passages free of irritating material.