whistle


whistle
[[t](h)wɪ̱s(ə)l[/t]]
whistles, whistling, whistled
1) VERB When you whistle or when you whistle a tune, you make a series of musical notes by forcing your breath out between your lips, or your teeth.

He whistled and sang snatches of songs...

He was whistling softly to himself...

[V n] As he washed he whistled a tune.

2) VERB When someone whistles, they make a sound by forcing their breath out between their lips or their teeth. People sometimes whistle when they are surprised or shocked, or to call a dog, or to show that they are impressed.
See also wolf-whistle

He whistled, surprised but not shocked...

[V prep] Jenkins whistled through his teeth, impressed at last...

[V prep] Women don't enjoy being whistled at.

N-COUNT: oft supp N
Whistle is also a noun.

Jackson gave a low whistle.

3) VERB If something such as a train or a kettle whistles, it makes a loud, high sound.

Somewhere a train whistled...

[V-ing] Over the whistling car radio the brass band music stopped.

Derived words:
whistling N-SING oft the N of n

...the whistling of the wind.

4) VERB If something such as the wind or a bullet whistles somewhere, it moves there, making a loud, high sound.

[V prep] The wind was whistling through the building...

[V prep] As I stood up a bullet whistled past my back.

5) N-COUNT: oft N of n A whistle is a loud sound produced by air or steam being forced through a small opening, or by something moving quickly through the air.

Hugh listened to the whistle of a train.

...the whistle of the wind.

...a shrill whistle from the boiling kettle.

6) N-COUNT A whistle is a small metal tube which you blow in order to produce a loud sound and attract someone's attention.

On the platform, the guard blew his whistle...

The referee blew his whistle for a penalty.

7) N-COUNT Some factories and other places where people work have a whistle which signals the beginning and the end of the working day.

Every night you could hear the whistles of the steel mill.

8) N-COUNT A whistle is a simple musical instrument in the shape of a metal pipe with holes.
See also tin whistle
9) PHRASE: V inflects, usu PHR on n If you blow the whistle on someone, or on something secret or illegal, you tell another person, especially a person in authority, what is happening.
See also whistle-blower

Companies should protect employees who blow the whistle on dishonest workmates and work practices.

Syn:
10) PHRASE: V inflects If you say that someone can whistle for a particular thing, you mean that you are not willing or able to give it to them. [INFORMAL]

`He wants a police escort.' - `Well, he can whistle for that.'

11) PHRASE: v-link PHR If you describe something as clean as a whistle, you mean that it is completely clean.
12) PHRASE: v-link PHR If you describe someone as clean as a whistle, you mean that they are not guilty of having done anything wrong.

`His private life is as clean as a whistle,' says McSmith.

13) PHRASE: V inflects If you say that someone is whistling in the dark, you mean that they are trying to remain brave and convince themselves that the situation is not as bad as it seems.

Then I waited, trying not to feel as if I were whistling in the dark, but I experienced no easing of my fear and anxiety.

14) PHRASE: V inflects To wet your whistle means to have a drink. [OLD-FASHIONED]
15) PHRASE: V inflects If you describe someone as whistling in the wind, you mean that they are trying unsuccessfully to change something which cannot be changed.

The leader of the Liberal Democrats accused the Prime Minister of whistling in the wind to raise Conservative party morale.


English dictionary. 2008.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Whistle — Whis tle, n. [AS. hwistle a pipe, flute, whistle. See {Whistle}, v. i.] [1913 Webster] 1. A sharp, shrill, more or less musical sound, made by forcing the breath through a small orifice of the lips, or through or instrument which gives a similar… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Whistle! — ホイッスル! (Hoissuru!) …   Википедия

  • whistle — ► NOUN 1) a clear, high pitched sound made by forcing breath through pursed lips, or between one s teeth. 2) any similar sound. 3) an instrument used to produce such a sound. ► VERB 1) emit or produce a whistle. 2) produce (a tune) in such a way …   English terms dictionary

  • whistle — [hwis′əl, wis′əl] vi. whistled, whistling [ME whistlen < OE hwistlian: for IE base see WHISPER] 1. a) to make a clear, shrill sound or note, or a series of these, by forcing breath between the teeth or through a narrow opening made by… …   English World dictionary

  • Whistle — Whis tle, v. t. [1913 Webster] 1. To form, utter, or modulate by whistling; as, to whistle a tune or an air. [1913 Webster] 2. To send, signal, or call by a whistle. [1913 Webster] He chanced to miss his dog; we stood still till he had whistled… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Whistle ! — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Whistle. Whistle ! Type Shōnen Thèmes Football Manga Type Shōnen A …   Wikipédia en Français

  • whistle at — ˈwhistle at [transitive] [present tense I/you/we/they whistle at he/she/it whistles at present participle whistling at past tense whistled at …   Useful english dictionary

  • Whistle — Whis tle, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Whistled}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Whistling}.] [AS. hwistlian; akin to Sw. hvissla, Dan. hvisle, Icel. hv[=i]sla to whisper, and E. whisper. [root]43. See {Whisper}.] [1913 Webster] 1. To make a kind of musical sound, or… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Whistle In — is a song written by Brian Wilson for the American pop band The Beach Boys. It was released on their 1967 album Smiley Smile . Details * Written by: Brian Wilson * Album: Smiley Smile * Time: 1 min 04 sec * Produced by: The Beach Boys Performers… …   Wikipedia

  • Whistle —   [englisch, wɪsl], 1) Flöte; Pennywhistle;   2) (Triller )Pfeife, z. B. Sambawhistle (auch portugiesisch Apito), bei den Samba Umzügen verwendete, oft mehrtönige Holz oder Metallpfeife, die der Leiter des Ensembles benutzt, um Einsätze neuer… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • whistle — [v] make sharp, shrill sound blare, blast, fife, flute, hiss, pipe, shriek, signal, skirl, sound, toot, tootle, trill, warble, wheeze, whine, whiz*; concepts 65,77 …   New thesaurus


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