1 [rat-l]
verb (used without object), rattled, rattling.
to give out or cause a rapid succession of short, sharp sounds, as in consequence of agitation and repeated concussions: The windows rattled in their frames.
to move or go, especially rapidly, with such sounds: The car rattled along the highway.
to talk rapidly; chatter: He rattled on for an hour about his ailments.
verb (used with object), rattled, rattling.
to cause to rattle: He rattled the doorknob violently.
to drive, send, bring, etc., especially rapidly, with rattling sounds: The wind rattled the metal can across the roadway.
to utter or perform in a rapid or lively manner: to rattle off a list of complaints.
to disconcert or confuse (a person): A sudden noise rattled the speaker.
Hunting. to stir up (a cover).
a rapid succession of short, sharp sounds, as from the collision of hard bodies.
an instrument contrived to make a rattling sound, especially a baby's toy filled with small pellets that rattle when shaken.
the series of horny, interlocking elements at the end of the tail of a rattlesnake, with which it produces a rattling sound.
a rattling sound in the throat, as the death rattle.

1250–1300; Middle English ratelen (v.), ratele (noun) (cognate with Dutch ratelen, German rasseln); imitative

1. clatter, knock. 7. discompose. 9. clatter.
Dictionary.com Unabridged


2 [rat-l]
verb (used with object), rattled, rattling. Nautical.
to furnish with ratlines (usually followed by down ).

1720–30; back formation from ratling ratline (taken as verbal noun)

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To rattled
World English Dictionary
rattle1 (ˈrætəl)
vb (foll by on)
1.  to make or cause to make a rapid succession of short sharp sounds, as of loose pellets colliding when shaken in a container
2.  to shake or cause to shake with such a sound: the explosion rattled the windows
3.  to send, move, drive, etc, with such a sound: the car rattled along the country road
4.  to chatter idly; talk, esp at length: he rattled on about his work
5.  (tr; foll by off, out etc) to recite perfunctorily or rapidly
6.  informal (tr) to disconcert; make frightened or anxious
7.  a rapid succession of short sharp sounds
8.  an object, esp a baby's toy, filled with small pellets that rattle when shaken
9.  a series of loosely connected horny segments on the tail of a rattlesnake, vibrated to produce a rattling sound
10.  any of various European scrophulariaceous plants having a capsule in which the seeds rattle, such as Pedicularis palustris (red rattle) and Rhinanthus minor (yellow rattle)
11.  idle chatter
12.  an idle chatterer
13.  med another name for rale
[C14: from Middle Dutch ratelen; related to Middle High German razzen, of imitative origin]

rattle2 (ˈrætəl)
vb (down)
to fit (a vessel or its rigging) with ratlines
[C18: back formation from rattling, variant of ratline]

Rattle (ˈrætəl)
Sir Simon. born 1955, British conductor. Principal conductor (1980--91) and music director (1991--98) of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; chief conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra from 2002

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

early 14c., perhaps in O.E., but not recorded; if not, from M.Du. ratelen, probably of imitative origin (cf. Ger. rasseln "to rattle," Gk. kradao "I rattle"). Sense of "fluster" is first recorded 1869. The noun is first recorded c.1500, in ref. to the sound; as a child's toy, recorded from 1510s. Rattlesnake
is from 1620s; shortened form rattler is from 1827. Rattletrap is from 1766, originally a noun, "nicknacks, trifles, odds and ends;" adj. sense of "rickety" is recorded from 1834.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Example sentences
Many of my colleagues have received e-mail messages from students that have
  left them upset and rattled.
You'll only end up feeling rattled, and that's not good for your teaching.
At the same time, try not to get rattled if the interviewers interrupt you.
Most college officials would undoubtedly dispute those charges, and question
  some of the facts rattled off in the video.
Related Words
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature