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caterwaul

[kat-er-wawl] /ˈkæt ərˌwɔl/
verb (used without object)
1.
to utter long wailing cries, as cats in rutting time.
2.
to utter a similar sound; howl or screech.
3.
to quarrel like cats.
noun, Also, caterwauling
4.
the cry of a cat in rutting time.
5.
any similar sound.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English cater(wawen) (equivalent to cater tomcat (< Middle Dutch) + wawen to howl, Old English wāwan to blow, said of the wind) + waul, variant of wail
Related forms
caterwauler, noun
Synonyms
2. wail, shriek, squawk, yowl.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for caterwaul

caterwaul

/ˈkætəˌwɔːl/
verb (intransitive)
1.
to make a yowling noise, as a cat on heat
noun
2.
a shriek or yell made by or sounding like a cat on heat
Derived Forms
caterwauler, noun
Word Origin
C14: of imitative origin
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
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Word Origin and History for caterwaul
v.

late 14c., caterwrawen, perhaps from Low German katerwaulen "cry like a cat," or formed in English from cater, from Middle Dutch cater "tomcat" + Middle English waul "to yowl," apparently from Old English *wrag, *wrah "angry," of uncertain origin but all somehow imitative. Related: Caterwauled; caterwauling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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14
17
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