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murmur +‎ -ous


murmurous (comparative more murmurous, superlative most murmurous)

  1. Low, indistinct (of a sound); reminiscent of a murmur.
    • 1590, Edmund Spenser, The Faerie Queene, London: Constable & Co., 1919, Book II, Canto XI, Stanza XXXII, p. 202, [1]
      Like as a fire, the which in hollow cave / Hath long bene underkept, and down supprest, / With murmurous disdaine doth inly rave, / And grudge, in so streight prison to be prest,
    • 1820, John Keats, Hyperion, Book II, lines 38-41, [2]
      [] Throughout all the isle / There was no covert, no retirèd cave / Unhaunted by the murmurous noise of waves, / Though scarcely heard in many a green recess.
    • 1916, James Joyce, A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, New York: B.W. Huebsch, 1922, p. 112, [3]
      He felt some dark presence moving irresistably upon him from the darkness, a presence subtle and murmurous as a flood filling him wholly with itself.
    • 1917, William Carlos Williams, "Good Night" in Al Que Quiere, Boston: The Four Seas Company, p. 43, [4]
      Waiting, with a glass in my hand / —three girls in crimson satin / pass close before me on / the murmurous background of / the crowded opera—
    • 1920, Wilfred Owen, "Spring Offensive" in Poems, London: Chatto & Windus, p. 20, [5]
      Marvelling they stood, and watched the long grass swirled / By the May breeze, murmurous with wasp and midge,
    • 1921, E. E. Cummings, "Puella Mea" in Complete Poems, 1904-1962, edited by George J. Firmage, New York: Liveright, 1991, p. 21,
      And if she speaks in her frail way, / it is wholly to bewitch / my smallest thought with a most swift / radiance wherein slowly drift / murmurous things divinely bright;
    • 1924, Herman Melville, Billy Budd, London: Constable & Co., Chapter 23, [6]
      The seeming remoteness of its source was because of its murmurous indistinctness since it came from close-by, even from the men massed on the ship's open deck.
    • 1959, Samuel Beckett, The Unnamable, in The Beckett Trilogy: Molloy; Malone Dies; The Unnamable, London: Calder, 1994, p. 397,
      It will be the same silence, the same as ever, murmurous with muted lamentation, panting and exhaling of impossible sorrow, like distant laughter, and brief spells of hush, as of one buried before his time.

Derived terms[edit]