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[hwim-per, wim-] /ˈʰwɪm pər, ˈwɪm-/
verb (used without object)
to cry with low, plaintive, broken sounds.
verb (used with object)
to utter in a whimper.
a whimpering cry or sound.
Origin of whimper
1505-15; obsolete whimp to whine + -er6
Related forms
whimperer, noun
whimperingly, adverb
unwhimpering, adjective
unwhimperingly, adverb
1. whine, weep, sob. 3. whine, sob. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for whimper
  • It is mostly a long-drawn whimper from a fellow for whom you can't hold much regard.
  • But in comparison with earlier economic crackups, this crisis has packed an emotional wallop but only an intellectual whimper.
  • The undefended estate changed hands without a whimper.
  • All the hullabaloo for over half a decade, and it ends with a whimper.
  • Fear-mongering by writing that all the effects are unknown, so better get under your desk and whimper are not useful bot harmful.
  • The moment, years in the making, was more whimper than bang.
  • Only half awake and rubbing his eyes, he began to whimper again.
  • By the campaign's end, theme and policy had gone out with barely a whimper.
  • And in his internal defeat-the whimper behind the swagger-he relies on her to set his ambition in motion.
  • The world does indeed end, and not with a whimper but a bang.
British Dictionary definitions for whimper


(intransitive) to cry, sob, or whine softly or intermittently
to complain or say (something) in a whining plaintive way
a soft plaintive whine
Derived Forms
whimperer, noun
whimpering, noun
whimperingly, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from dialect whimp, 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 whimper

1510s, probably of imitative origin, or from German wimmern "to whimper, moan." The noun is first recorded c.1700. Related: Whimpered; whimpering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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