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Denotation vs. Connotation

hiss

[his] /hɪs/
verb (used without object)
1.
to make or emit a sharp sound like that of the letter s prolonged, as a snake does, or as steam does when forced under pressure through a small opening.
2.
to express disapproval or contempt by making this sound:
The audience hissed when the actor forgot his lines.
verb (used with object)
3.
to express disapproval of by hissing:
The audience hissed the controversial play.
4.
to silence or drive away by hissing (usually followed by away, down, etc.):
They hissed down the author when he tried to speak.
5.
to utter with a hiss.
noun
6.
a hissing sound, especially one made in disapproval.
Origin of hiss
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English hissen; probably imitative; compare Old English hyscan to jeer at, rail (derivative of husc jeering; cognate with Old Saxon, Old High German hosc)
Related forms
hisser, noun
hissingly, adverb
outhiss, verb (used with object)
unhissed, adjective
Synonyms
2, 4. boo, razz, heckle.

Hiss

[his] /hɪs/
noun
1.
Alger, 1904–96, U.S. public official, accused of espionage 1948 and imprisoned for perjury 1950–54.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for hiss
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But Hercules was no whit disheartened, and squeezed the great snake so tightly that he soon began to hiss with pain.

    The Three Golden Apples Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • Soften the burning flame so that it is just barely beginning to hiss.

  • There was no answer—just the hiss of wind-blown sand against the rock and the mutter of the car in the background.

    Planet of the Damned Harry Harrison
  • The frozen fountains now plash, and hiss, and sparkle in the sun.

    The Daltons, Volume II (of II) Charles James Lever
  • There were no crackling atmospherics nor hiss of static, even when he turned the power full on.

    Planet of the Damned Harry Harrison
  • Here he was interrupted by a hiss, which the Captain immediately suppressed.

    Follow My leader Talbot Baines Reed
  • Then before his starting eyes a figure rose out of the bushes whence the hiss had come.

    The Free Rangers Joseph A. Altsheler
  • It's a dreadfully intimate affair with me, and if I didn't like it I should hiss, anyway.

    The Story of a Play W. D. Howells
British Dictionary definitions for hiss

hiss

/hɪs/
noun
1.
a voiceless fricative sound like that of a prolonged s
2.
such a sound uttered as an exclamation of derision, contempt, etc, esp by an audience or crowd
3.
(electronics) receiver noise with a continuous spectrum, caused by thermal agitation, shot noise, etc
interjection
4.
an exclamation of derision or disapproval
verb
5.
(intransitive) to produce or utter a hiss
6.
(transitive) to express with a hiss, usually to indicate derision or anger
7.
(transitive) to show derision or anger towards (a speaker, performer, etc) by hissing
Derived Forms
hisser, noun
Word Origin
C14: of imitative origin

Hiss

/hɪs/
noun
1.
Alger. 1904–96, US government official: imprisoned (1950–54) for perjury in connection with alleged espionage activities
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 hiss
v.

late 14c., of imitative origin. Johnson wrote, "it is remarkable, that this word cannot be pronounced without making the noise which it signifies." Related: Hissed; hissing.

n.

1510s, from hiss (v.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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hiss in the Bible

to express contempt (Job 27:23). The destruction of the temple is thus spoken of (1 Kings 9:8). Zechariah (10:8) speaks of the Lord gathering the house of Judah as it were with a hiss: "I will hiss for them." This expression may be "derived from the noise made to attract bees in hiving, or from the sound naturally made to attract a person's attention."

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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7
6
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