humming

[huhm-ing]

Origin:
1570–80; hum + -ing2

hummingly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged

hum

[huhm]
verb (used without object), hummed, humming.
1.
to make a low, continuous, droning sound.
2.
to give forth an indistinct sound of mingled voices or noises.
3.
to utter an indistinct sound in hesitation, embarrassment, dissatisfaction, etc.; hem.
4.
to sing with closed lips, without articulating words.
5.
to be in a state of busy activity: The household hummed in preparation for the wedding.
6.
British Slang. to have a bad odor, as of stale perspiration.
verb (used with object), hummed, humming.
7.
to sound, sing, or utter by humming: to hum a tune.
8.
to bring, put, etc., by humming: to hum a child to sleep.
noun
9.
the act or sound of humming; an inarticulate or indistinct murmur; hem.
10.
Audio. an unwanted low-frequency sound caused by power-line frequencies in any audio component.
interjection
11.
(an inarticulate sound uttered in contemplation, hesitation, dissatisfaction, doubt, etc.)

Origin:
1300–50; Middle English; ultimately imitative; cognate with German hummen to hum; cf. humblebee

underhum, noun


5. bustle, buzz.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
hum (hʌm)
 
vb , hums, humming, hummed
1.  (intr) to make a low continuous vibrating sound like that of a prolonged m
2.  (intr) (of a person) to sing with the lips closed
3.  (intr) to utter an indistinct sound, as in hesitation; hem
4.  informal (intr) to be in a state of feverish activity
5.  slang (Brit), (Irish) (intr) to smell unpleasant
6.  slang (Austral) (intr) to scrounge
7.  hum and haw See hem
 
n
8.  a low continuous murmuring sound
9.  electronics an undesired low-frequency noise in the output of an amplifier or receiver, esp one caused by the power supply
10.  slang (Austral) a scrounger; cadger
11.  slang (Brit), (Irish) an unpleasant odour
 
interj, —n
12.  an indistinct sound of hesitation, embarrassment, etc; hem
 
[C14: of imitative origin; compare Dutch hommelen, Old High German humbal bumblebee]
 
'hummer
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

hum
late 14c., hommen "make a murmuring sound to cover embarrassment," later hummen "to buzz, drone" (early 15c.), probably of imitative origin. Sense of "sing with closed lips" is first attested late 15c.; that of "be busy and active" is 1884, perhaps on analogy of a beehive. Humming-bird (1630s) so called
from sound made by the rapid vibration of its wings.
"There is a curious bird to see to, called a humming bird, no bigger then a great Beetle." [Thomas Morton, "New English Canaan," 1637]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

hum (hŭm)
n.
A low, continuous murmur blended of many sounds.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
Water is used to produce the fuels that keep us moving and our planet humming.
We turn the mattress over and never head the humming radio station again.
Luckily some tinkering and a zillion restarts got everything humming after
  about an hour.
Together, the silicon combo kept us smoothly humming through the phone's menu
  screens.
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