Definition of twitch in English:

twitch

verb

  • 1Give or cause to give a short, sudden jerking or convulsive movement.

    no object ‘her lips twitched and her eyelids fluttered’
    with object ‘the dog twitched his ears’
    • ‘Winthrop gives me an apologetic look, though a corner of his mouth is slightly twitching in amusement.’
    • ‘Casey felt her heart shudder and her lips twitch upwards into a smile.’
    • ‘All he noticed was Paul's eyebrow twitching upward at the reaction.’
    • ‘His ears twitched nervously as he noticed the growing changes in her demeanor.’
    • ‘Lionel's face twitched involuntarily into a little frown.’
    • ‘Suki's tail twitched nervously, her ears bent flat against her head.’
    • ‘My eyes still twitched a bit but my breathing calmed as I stared into those smiling blue pools.’
    • ‘I swallowed, feeling my fingers twitch involuntarily in the cold.’
    • ‘Dale's eyebrow twitched in slight annoyance, as he walked past the girl coolly.’
    • ‘Jason looked at me, a smile twitching at the corner of his mouth.’
    • ‘Sometimes an arm or a leg twitched uncontrollably.’
    • ‘He sat down in his chair and visibly twitched in annoyance as it squeaked noisily.’
    • ‘My hands were twitching madly, and I closed my eyes.’
    • ‘Her hand twitched again, and this time he knew it was real.’
    • ‘His brows were furrowed and his lower eyelid twitched in anger.’
    • ‘My jaw twitched, and I closed my eyes to control my composure.’
    • ‘He shook his head and his lips began twitching in amusement.’
    • ‘Desiree sighed, her nostrils twitching like they always did when she was in deep thought.’
    • ‘I saw soldiers' heads turn and nostrils twitch distractedly.’
    • ‘Lying in the shade of a sycamore tree, the girl twitched in her sleep.’
    jerk, move convulsively, move spasmodically, spasm, convulse, flutter, quiver, tremble, shiver, quaver, shudder
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    1. 1.1with object and adverbial Cause to move in a specified direction by giving a sharp pull.
      ‘he twitched a cigarette out of a packet’
      • ‘I twitched the rod back.’
      • ‘Mallory twitched the tag again, careful not to move it too much.’
      • ‘I can just see him sitting down to his tea and not being able to pick up his cutlery without twitching his knife and fork backwards and forwards in a rowing motion.’
      • ‘Cautiously, Rakael twitched the covers aside, exposing his pale chest.’
      • ‘I twitched the line to ensure I was watching the correct piece of white dust.’
      • ‘I twitched the line imparting life into the fly - a fly that was created in Northern Canada.’
      • ‘This is the moment you have been waiting for as you twitch the line to impart life into the fly.’
      • ‘This is the moment I have been waiting for as I twitch the line to impart life into the fly.’
      snatch, pluck, pull, tug, tweak
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  • 2with object Use a twitch to subdue (a horse).

    • ‘The vet tied him to a high smooth wall and then twitched him.’
    • ‘When twitched, the horse appears sedated and his heart rate slows.’
    • ‘In many cases, owners and grooms resort to modifying the clip, twitching the horse, or even having the vet out every few weeks to inject sedatives.’

noun

  • 1A short, sudden jerking or convulsive movement.

    ‘his mouth gave a slight twitch’
    • ‘If hyponatremia develops rapidly, muscular twitches, irritability and convulsions can occur.’
    • ‘My attention was focused on his body, waiting for the first twitch of movement.’
    • ‘Other than a slight twitch of her head, she made no motion to stop him.’
    • ‘Who could watch without at least a slight twitch or squirm?’
    • ‘Tirian noted a slight twitch in the old man's eye as their gazes met.’
    • ‘Seeing the slight twitch on the corner of Paul's mouth, Gabby saw that he took the comment in good humor.’
    • ‘There was a slight twitch above his temple, indicating that she had hit a nerve.’
    • ‘He smirked inwardly, the slightest twitch at the corner of his mouth the only outward sign of his amusement.’
    • ‘Each one stood in a perfect square, without so much as a twitch of movement.’
    • ‘Hearing voices, seeing things, facial twitches, and perfectionism are occurrences we may have repeatedly in our lives.’
    • ‘This is where such characteristics as a facial twitch or a well-placed mole come in handy.’
    • ‘Pursing her lips, Lyenda felt a slight twitch underneath her ribs.’
    • ‘Only I could see the little facial twitch that indicates when she knows she has been insulted.’
    • ‘The old boy is in a pretty bad way and he's developed a nervous twitch now.’
    • ‘Then again just thinking about it made his mouth twitch and he started to chuckle.’
    • ‘Buffy shook her head with a little twitch of her lips.’
    • ‘A slight raise of the eyebrow, the merest twitch of the lip can say so much.’
    • ‘I sort of half smiled, which makes me look like I have a facial twitch.’
    • ‘There ' s a twitch at the corner of his mouth, as he reaches out his hand.’
    • ‘With that and a holier-than-thou twitch of one eyebrow, I was out the door.’
    spasm, convulsive movement, convulsion, jerk, flutter, quiver, tremor, shiver, shudder
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    1. 1.1A sudden pull or jerk.
      ‘he gave a twitch at his moustache’
      • ‘She made a little twitch of a finger, and Jeff finally locked the tracer.’
      • ‘It's like sitting on a river bank with a fishing rod, anticipating the slightest twitch from beneath the water.’
      • ‘With a twitch of his hand, he cast them onto the table.’
      • ‘Antzane gave a deep nod and a twitch of her skirt.’
      • ‘With a twitch of her reins, her horse breaks right, and the therm moan their disappointment.’
      pull, tug, tweak
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    2. 1.2A sudden sharp sensation; a pang.
      ‘he felt a twitch of annoyance’
      • ‘In the eerie silence, Sanura felt a twitch of hunger.’
      • ‘I felt a twitch of pain on my stomach and then I remember what happened.’
      • ‘I asked and attempted to sit on the bed, but I felt a twitch of pain on my body and Irrazé pushed me back onto the bed.’
      • ‘You feel a twitch of hostility towards them.’
      • ‘I've a twitch of respect for the man, but am not ready to be overly sentimental about it.’
      • ‘Even in my hungover state, I felt a twitch of worry.’
      • ‘But there's also a twitch of fear in Greg's normally laughing blue eyes.’
      • ‘He held it in his fist where a twitch of rage could crush it.’
      • ‘Sara tightened her hold on the sketches to hide a twitch of fear.’
      • ‘Is it a good thing that over the years we have become inured to it, hardly able to muster a twitch of outrage?’
      • ‘I had settled down during Mum's gossip but I now feel a twitch of impending doom.’
      twinge, dart, stab, prick
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  • 2A small noose attached to a stick, which may be twisted around the upper lip or the ear of a horse to subdue it during veterinary procedures.

    ‘Others have resorted to twitches, blindfolds and tying up a front leg.’
    ‘Bob calmly grabbed the stallion's halter, led him into the corner of the stall, placed a twitch around his nose and proceeded to treat him.’

Origin

Middle English of Germanic origin; related to Old English twiccian ‘to pluck, pull sharply’.

Pronunciation

twitch

/twɪtʃ/