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falter

[fawl-ter] /ˈfɔl tər/
verb (used without object)
1.
to hesitate or waver in action, purpose, intent, etc.; give way:
Her courage did not falter at the prospect of hardship.
2.
to speak hesitatingly or brokenly.
3.
to move unsteadily; stumble.
verb (used with object)
4.
to utter hesitatingly or brokenly:
to falter an apology.
noun
5.
the act of faltering; an unsteadiness of gait, voice, action, etc.
6.
a faltering sound.
Origin
1300-1350
1300-50; Middle English falteren, of obscure origin; perhaps akin to Old Norse faltrast to bother with, be troubled with
Related forms
falterer, noun
falteringly, adverb
nonfaltering, adjective
nonfalteringly, adverb
unfaltering, adjective
unfalteringly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for faltered
  • Though some designers faltered when faced with the new season, others were inspired.
  • Her efforts have had popular support and bipartisan appeal, but have faltered in the teeth of business opposition.
  • Halfway across he faltered and, turning around to go back, collapsed.
  • Even national leaders who should be cheerleaders for an evenhanded urban policy have faltered.
  • But then he faltered as if there were something he couldn't figure out how to say or even whether to say it.
  • But its mission to champion adventurous contemporary music has never faltered.
  • Foreign demand has faltered for some commodities and plummeted for others.
  • Those who faltered were often demoralized before the event, while those who excelled were optimistic.
  • But that effort has faltered as the militias have insisted on forming their own independent coalition.
  • The beleaguered bookseller could file for bankruptcy as early as next week after efforts to refinance its debt faltered.
British Dictionary definitions for faltered

falter

/ˈfɔːltə/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to be hesitant, weak, or unsure; waver
2.
(intransitive) to move unsteadily or hesitantly; stumble
3.
to utter haltingly or hesitantly; stammer
noun
4.
uncertainty or hesitancy in speech or action
5.
a quavering or irregular sound
Derived Forms
falterer, noun
falteringly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Icelandic faltrast
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 faltered

falter

v.

mid-14c., of unknown origin, possibly from a Scandinavian source (cf. Old Norse faltrask "be burdened, hesitate, be troubled"), or a frequentative of Middle English falden "to fold," influenced by fault. Related: Faltered; faltering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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