rattle

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rat·tle / ˈratl/ • v. 1. [intr.] make a rapid succession of short, sharp knocking sounds, typically as a result of being shaken and striking repeatedly against a hard surface or object: there was a sound of bottles rattling as he stacked the crates. ∎  [tr.] cause (something) to make such sounds: he rattled some change in his pocket. ∎  (of a vehicle or its driver or passengers) move or travel somewhere while making such sounds: trains rattled past at frequent intervals. ∎  (rattle around in) fig. be in or occupy (an unnecessarily or undesirably spacious room or building). 2. [tr.] (often be rattled) inf. cause (someone) to feel nervous, worried, or irritated: she turned quickly, rattled by his presence. • n. 1. a rapid succession of short, sharp, hard sounds: the rattle of teacups on the tray. ∎  a gurgling sound in the throat of a dying person. 2. a thing used to make a rapid succession of short, sharp sounds, in particular: ∎  a baby's toy consisting of a container filled with small pellets that makes a noise when shaken. ∎  the set of horny rings at the end of a rattlesnake's tail, shaken with a dry buzzing sound as a warning. PHRASES: rattle someone's cage inf. make someone feel angry or annoyed. rattle sabers threaten to take aggressive action.See also saber-rattling.PHRASAL VERBS: rattle something off say, perform, or produce something quickly and effortlessly: he rattled off some instructions. rattle on/away talk rapidly and at length, esp. in an inane or boring way.DERIVATIVES: rat·tly / ˈratl-ē; ˈratlē/ adj.

rattle

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rattle give out a rapid succession of short sharp sounds XIV; various transf. uses from XVI. prob. — (M)LG., MDu. ratelen = MHG. razzeln (G. rasseln), of imit. orig.
Hence sb. rattling sound; instrument for making a rattling noise; plant having a seed-pod that rattles XVI.

rattle

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rattle rattle sabres threaten to take aggressive action.
rattle someone's cage make someone feel angry or annoyed; the person concerned is being humorously compared with a dangerous caged animal.

rattle

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rattle. See ratchet.

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rattle

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