Word of the Day

Friday, August 04, 2000


\UL-yuh-layt; YOOL-\ , intransitive verb;
To howl, as a dog or a wolf; to wail; as, ululating jackals.
He had often dreamed of his grieving family visiting his grave, ululating as only the relatives of martyrs may.
-- Edward Shirley, Know Thine Enemy: A Spy's Journey into Revolutionary Iran
She wanted to be on the tarmac, to ululate and raise her hands to the heavens.
-- Deborah Sontag, "Palestinian Airport Opens to Jubilation", New York Times, November 25, 1998
She used harrowing, penetrating nasal tones and a rasp that approached Janis Joplin's double-stops; she made notes break and ululate.
-- Jon Pareles, "On the Third Day There Was Whooping and There Was Moshing", New York Times, August 18, 1998
Ululate derives from Latin ululare, to howl, to yell, ultimately of imitative origin. The noun form is ululation; the adjective form is ululant.
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