- high-pitched and piercing in sound quality: a shrill cry.
- producing such a sound.
- full of or characterized by such a sound: shrill music.
- betraying some strong emotion or attitude in an exaggerated amount, as antagonism or defensiveness.
- marked by great intensity; keen: the shrill, incandescent light of the exploding bomb.
- to cry shrilly.
- a shrill sound.
- in a shrill manner; shrilly.
Origin of shrill
Related Wordsacute, high-pitched, loud, malodorous, penetrating, piercing, piping, putrid, rancid, rank, sharp, shrieky, shrill, smelly, soprano, strident, treble, reeking
Examples from the Web for shrilly
Opposites attract, even when they come from different ethnic backgrounds, Rob seems to shrilly scream at the top of its lungs.CBS’s ‘Rob’ Is TV’s Worst New Show
January 11, 2012
This said, Abellino placed a whistle at his lips, and blew it shrilly.The Bravo of Venice
Shrilly the whistle sounded at the lips of the petty officer.Dave Darrin After The Mine Layers
H. Irving Hancock
It blew the snow from the cracks and whistled through them shrilly.The Biography of a Prairie Girl
But to-day he whistled falsely and shrilly between his teeth.Urban Sketches
"I don't like," called out Alice shrilly, going straight on.Mammon and Co.
E. F. Benson
- sharp and high-pitched in quality
- emitting a sharp high-pitched sound
- to utter (words, sounds, etc) in a shrill tone
- (tr) rare to cause to produce a shrill sound
Word Origin and History for shrilly
late 14c., schrylle "high-pitched, piercing" (of the voice), probably related to Old English scralletan "to sound loudly" and of imitative origin (cf. Low German schrell, German schrill "piercing, shrill"). Related: Shrillness; shrilly (adv.).
"to sound shrilly," c.1300, imitative (see shrill (adj.). Related: Shrilled; shrilling.