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titter

[tit-er] /ˈtɪt ər/
verb (used without object)
1.
to laugh in a restrained, self-conscious, or affected way, as from nervousness or in ill-suppressed amusement.
noun
2.
a tittering laugh.
Origin of titter
1610-1620
1610-20; perhaps < Scandinavian; compare Old Norse tittra to quiver, Swedish (dial.) tittra to giggle
Related forms
titterer, noun
titteringly, adverb
untittering, adjective
Synonyms
1. snicker, snigger, giggle.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for titter
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • “Go ahead and step on me,” he grinned, and a titter of giggles ran through the rest of the company.

    Janet Hardy in Radio City Ruthe S. Wheeler
  • "Have a care of the sentinel on the hill-top," Sakr-el-Bahr admonished him, provoking a titter.

    The Sea-Hawk Raphael Sabatini
  • Some strange country girls on either side of me began to titter.

    The Blunders of a Bashful Man Metta Victoria Fuller Victor
  • For a moment there was silence, save for a titter from the group of seamen.

    The Wild Geese Stanley John Weyman
  • A loud laugh from behind Tess's back, in the shade of the garden, united with the titter within the room.

  • But no one did, and some of the younger boys in front began to titter nervously.

    Left Guard Gilbert Ralph Henry Barbour
  • Then my titter would reveal the rogue, who was reminded that it was his bedtime.

  • The remark was passed from one to another and a titter went round the room.

    Old Ebenezer Opie Read
British Dictionary definitions for titter

titter

/ˈtɪtə/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to snigger, esp derisively or in a suppressed way
2.
(transitive) to express by tittering
noun
3.
a suppressed laugh, chuckle, or snigger
Derived Forms
titterer, noun
tittering, adjective
titteringly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: 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 titter
v.

1610s, "giggle in a suppressed or covert way," probably of imitative origin. Related: Tittered; tittering. The noun is first recorded 1728.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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6
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