Definition of hoarse in English:


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  • (of a person's voice) sounding rough and harsh, typically as the result of a sore throat or of shouting.

    ‘a hoarse whisper’
    • ‘he shouted himself hoarse’
    • ‘Ear, nose and throat clinics have been taking patients every day complaining of hoarse voices and throat pains.’
    • ‘My voice is hoarse and croaky, my hands hurt and I'm still shaking!’
    • ‘Bloom's voice was too hoarse for the scream and the words left his throat in a painful screech.’
    • ‘Speaking at an abnormal or uncomfortable pitch can lead to hoarse voice.’
    • ‘A hoarse voice is the first complaint of a person with a problem in the voice box.’
    • ‘If your hoarse voice does not recover after two weeks then seek medical attention.’
    • ‘Arhen yelped, but his hoarse voice prevented him from saying anything above a whisper.’
    • ‘Angela's voice was hoarse, and barely about a whisper as she reached out her hand to us.’
    • ‘As she recognized the hoarse voice, a new sort of terror now gripped her heart.’
    • ‘Mary placed the muzzle against his forehead and when she spoke, her voice was hoarse and sounded strangely foreign to herself.’
    • ‘My hands flung behind my back and I leapt backward as the deep, hoarse voice spoke.’
    • ‘His voice was hoarse and his neck hurt as he tried to look over at his father.’
    • ‘His aged voice was hoarse, slow and soothing, a fatherly sound that Alsonte found foreign.’
    • ‘Kari recognized that it was her father's hoarse voice from the left side of the room.’
    • ‘Lari's voice was hoarse and weak, like she had been sleeping for a week.’
    • ‘Mrs. Leander went on in her hoarse voice, one that tells of her motherhood.’
    • ‘Her voice was hoarse and she was very weak, for she could barely lift her arms to hug me.’
    • ‘He didn't speak for a while, and when he did, his voice was somewhat hoarse.’
    • ‘He had shouted out the window until his voice had gone hoarse, which hadn't taken long.’
    • ‘I battle against the crying of babies and the shouts of toddlers and end up screaming and shouting myself hoarse.’
    rough, harsh, croaky, croaking, throaty, gruff, husky, guttural, gravelly, growly, cracked, grating, rasping, raucous
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/hôrs/ /hɔrs/


Old English hās, of Germanic origin; related to Dutch hees. The spelling with r was influenced in Middle English by an Old Norse cognate.