[ shuhd-er ]
See synonyms for: shuddershuddering on

verb (used without object)
  1. to tremble with a sudden convulsive movement, as from horror, fear, or cold.

  1. a convulsive movement of the body, as from horror, fear, or cold.

Origin of shudder

First recorded in 1275–1325; Middle English shodderen (verb) (cognate with German schaudern, from Low German ), frequentative of Old English scūdan “to tremble”; see -er6

synonym study For shudder

1. See shiver1.

Other words for shudder

Words that may be confused with shudder Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use shudder in a sentence

  • I shuddered at the thought of a President McCain, who wanted to acquire wars like new suits.

    The Case Against Isolation | Michael Tomasky | September 13, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
  • Mamma shuddered and slipped away in the darkness to write a long letter to Papa.

  • She shuddered with disgust as the rich brown water of the Nile came up to her breast, to her chin.

    Bella Donna | Robert Hichens
  • This was not a bad idea, although the stranger shuddered as he thought of his ill-smelling stateroom and short berth.

    The Cromptons | Mary J. Holmes
  • Into the study they might not go, and when Blanche would have asked why, Tom pressed her hand and shuddered.

    The Daisy Chain | Charlotte Yonge
  • But she was his mother, and even her harsh nature shuddered before the task of instructing him in this vile thing.

    St. Martin's Summer | Rafael Sabatini

British Dictionary definitions for shudder


/ (ˈʃʌdə) /

  1. (intr) to shake or tremble suddenly and violently, as from horror, fear, aversion, etc

  1. the act of shuddering; convulsive shiver

Origin of shudder

C18: from Middle Low German schōderen; related to Old Frisian skedda to shake, Old High German skutten to shake

Derived forms of shudder

  • shuddering, adjective
  • shudderingly, adverb
  • shuddery, adjective

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