intransitive verb Etymology: Middle English caterwawen Date: 14th century 1. to make a harsh cry 2. to protest or complain noisilycaterwaul noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.

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  • Caterwaul — Cat er*waul, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Caterwauled}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Caterwauling}.] [Cat + waul, wawl, to cry as a cat.] To cry as cats in rutting time; to make a harsh, offensive noise. Coleridge. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Caterwaul — Cat er*waul, n. A caterwauling. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • caterwaul — late 14c., caterwrawen, perhaps from M.Du. cater tomcat + M.E. waul to yowl, apparently from O.E. *wrag, *wrah angry, of uncertain origin …   Etymology dictionary

  • caterwaul — [v] make screeching, crying noise bawl, bicker, howl, quarrel, scream, screech, shriek, squall, wail, yell, yowl; concept 77 …   New thesaurus

  • caterwaul — ► VERB ▪ make a shrill howling or wailing noise. ► NOUN ▪ a shrill howling or wailing noise …   English terms dictionary

  • caterwaul — [kat′ər wôl΄] vi. [ME caterwrawen, caterwawen < cater (prob. < MDu kater, tomcat) + v. wrawlen, wawlen; prob. echoic] to make a shrill, howling sound like that of a cat at rutting time; screech; wail n. such a sound …   English World dictionary

  • caterwaul — UK [ˈkætə(r)wɔːl] / US [ˈkætərˌwɔl] verb [intransitive] Word forms caterwaul : present tense I/you/we/they caterwaul he/she/it caterwauls present participle caterwauling past tense caterwauled past participle caterwauled if a person or animal… …   English dictionary

  • caterwaul — [[t]kæ̱tə(r)wɔːl[/t]] caterwauls, caterwauling, caterwauled VERB If a person or animal caterwauls, they make a loud, high, unpleasant noise like the noise that cats make when they fight. At the water s edge they resumed caterwauling and waving… …   English dictionary

  • caterwaul — verb (I) to make a loud high unpleasant noise like the sound a cat makes caterwaul noun (singular) …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • caterwaul — caterwauler, n. /kat euhr wawl /, v.i. 1. to utter long wailing cries, as cats in rutting time. 2. to utter a similar sound; howl or screech. 3. to quarrel like cats. n. Also, caterwauling. 4. the cry of a cat in rutting time. 5. any similar… …   Universalium

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