From Middle English snoren, fnoren (“to snore loudly; snort”), from Middle English snore, *fnore (“snore; snort”, noun), from Old English fnora (“snort; sneezing”), from Proto-Germanic *fnuzô, from Proto-Indo-European *pnew- (“to breathe; snort; sneeze”). Compare also Proto-Germanic *snarkjaną, Middle Low German snorren (“to drone”), Dutch snorren (“to hum, purr”).
The infrequency of the “fn” combination coupled with the visual similarity of an “f” and “ſ” (long “s”) assisted in ultimately turning “fnore” into “ſnore (snore)” (compare sneeze, from Middle English fnese).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /snɔː/
- (General American) IPA(key): /snɔɹ/
- (rhotic, without the horse–hoarse merger) IPA(key): /sno(ː)ɹ/
- (non-rhotic, without the horse–hoarse merger) IPA(key): /snoə/
Audio (US) (file)
- Rhymes: -ɔː(ɹ)
- To breathe during sleep with harsh, snorting noises caused by vibration of the soft palate.
- 1610–1611, William Shakespeare, “The Tempest”, in Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies: Published According to the True Originall Copies (First Folio), London: Printed by Isaac Iaggard, and Ed[ward] Blount, published 1623, OCLC 606515358, [Act II, scene i], page 8-9:
While you here do ſnoaring lie,
His time doth take:
If of Life you keepe a care,
Shake off ſlumber, and beware.
snore (plural snores)