- to pulsate with unusual rapidity from exertion, emotion, disease, etc.; flutter: His heart palpitated wildly.
- to pulsate; quiver; throb; tremble.
- to cause to pulsate or tremble.
Origin of palpitate
1. See pulsate.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for palpitating
They were sorry for the little white-faced, palpitating thing.Life and Death of Harriett Frean
When he was finally in the coat, she was rather flushed and palpitating.K
Mary Roberts Rinehart
They stood before him palpitating like birds, poised, tense for flight.The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
Then Pierre, having quieted his palpitating heart, drew near.The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete
I stood by with a palpitating heart as he turned the lock and opened the door.City of Endless Night
- (of the heart) to beat with abnormal rapidity
- to flutter or tremble
C17: from Latin palpitāre to throb, from palpāre to stroke
Word Origin and History for palpitating
1620s, from Latin palpitatus, past participle of palpitare "to throb, flutter" (see palpitation). Related: Palpitated; palpitating.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper