Dictionary » W » Whistle



1. To make a kind of musical sound, or series of sounds, by forcing the breath through a small orifice formed by contracting the lips; also, to emit a similar sound, or series of notes, from the mouth or beak, as birds. The weary plowman leaves the task of day, And, trudging homeward, whistles on the way. (gay)

2. To make a shrill sound with a wind or steam instrument, somewhat like that made with the lips; to blow a sharp, shrill tone.

3. To sound shrill, or like a pipe; to make a sharp, shrill sound; as, a bullet whistles through the air. The wild winds whistle, and the billows roar. (pope)

Origin: AS. Hwistlian; akin to Sw. Hvissla, Dan. Hvisle, Icel. Hvisla to whisper, and E. Whisper. See Whisper.

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 sound; the sound used by a sportsman in calling his dogs; the shrill note of a bird; as, the sharp whistle of a boy, or of a boatswain's pipe; the blackbird's mellow whistle. Might we but hear The folded flocks, penned in their wattled cotes, . . . Or whistle from the lodge. (milton) The countryman could not forbear smiling, . . . And by that means lost his whistle. (Spectator) They fear his whistle, and forsake the seas. (Dryden)

2. The shrill sound made by wind passing among trees or through crevices, or that made by bullet, or the like, passing rapidly through the air; the shrill noise (much used as a signal, etc) made by steam or gas escaping through a small orifice, or impinging against the edge of a metallic bell or cup.

3. An instrument in which gas or steam forced into a cavity, or against a thin edge, produces a sound more or less like that made by one who whistles through the compressed lips; as, a child's whistle; a boatswain's whistle; a steam whistle (see Steam whistle, under Steam). The bells she jingled, and the whistle blew. (pope)

4. The mouth and throat; so called as being the organs of whistling. So was her jolly whistle well ywet. (Chaucer) Let's drink the other cup to wet our whistles.

(Science: zoology) (Walton) Whistle duck, the American golden-eye.

Origin: AS. Hwistle a pipe, flute, whistle. See Whistle.

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Physical incapabilities

Could anyone tell me WHY for god's sakes can't i wink, whistle, lift one eyebrow without lifting the other, move my ears or snap my fingers??? Is it something physical? Should i practise more? Or is it something genetic? Or neurological? Or phycological? ...

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by TheVirus
Sat Nov 28, 2009 1:44 am
Forum: General Discussion
Topic: Physical incapabilities
Replies: 2
Views: 1189


... cases there is a wrong use of science. And to finish on a more personal note: But to show flaws in a scientific theory, it is required that the whistle blower understand what (s)he is talking about. We can see, particularly in this forum, a lot of people who have no clue about what they are ...

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by canalon
Tue Jun 30, 2009 4:05 pm
Forum: General Discussion
Topic: Biology is not a science
Replies: 43
Views: 61366

BIrd SOng And Bird Whistle.

I'd be surprised if there were any biologically accepted definitions for these terms. Does a crow sing or whistle? I have a number of biology/zoology dictionaries, and none venture there.

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by wbla3335
Sat Nov 10, 2007 7:24 am
Forum: Zoology Discussion
Topic: BIrd SOng And Bird Whistle.
Replies: 4
Views: 3673

BIrd SOng And Bird Whistle.

Does anyone know if there is any difference between bird songs & bird whistles? Or what is the precise definition of these two words..?

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by 2810712
Sat Nov 10, 2007 3:12 am
Forum: Zoology Discussion
Topic: BIrd SOng And Bird Whistle.
Replies: 4
Views: 3673

A Monkey's Uncle

... be used to convey complex messages and instructions. Sign languages can be used cross-culturally. One other thing we can do that chimps cannot, is whistle. There is one small group of people who use that ability to convey information over a distance that their voice cannot carry. Clearly we have ...

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by narrowstaircase
Wed Mar 14, 2007 3:46 am
Forum: Evolution
Topic: A Monkey's Uncle
Replies: 26
Views: 62720
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