Definitions for hiccupˈhɪk ʌp, -əp

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word hiccup

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

hic•cupˈhɪk ʌp, -əp(n.; v.)-cuped; -cupped or -coughed, -cup•ing; -cup•ping or -cough•ing.

or hic•cough

  1. (n.)a quick, involuntary inhalation that follows a spasm of the diaphragm and is suddenly checked by closure of the glottis, producing a short, relatively sharp sound.

    Category: Pathology

  2. Usu., hiccups. the condition of having such spasms.

    Category: Pathology

  3. (v.i.)to make the sound of a hiccup:

    The motor hiccuped.

  4. to have the hiccups.

    Category: Pathology

Origin of hiccup:

1570–80; alter. of hocket, hickock, of imit. origin; akin to LG hick

Princeton's WordNet

  1. hiccup, hiccough, singultus(verb)

    (usually plural) the state of having reflex spasms of the diaphragm accompanied by a rapid closure of the glottis producing an audible sound; sometimes a symptom of indigestion

    "how do you cure the hiccups?"

  2. hiccup, hiccough(verb)

    breathe spasmodically, and make a sound

    "When you have to hiccup, drink a glass of cold water"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. hiccup(noun)ˈhɪk ʌp, -əp

    a repeated and uncontrollable sound from your chest

    I always get the hiccups when I eat too quickly.; He hiccuped loudly.


  1. hiccup(Noun)

    A spasm of the diaphragm, or the resulting sound.

    There was a loud hiccup from the back of the room and the class erupted in laughter.

  2. hiccup(Noun)

    A minor setback.

    There's been a slight hiccup in the processing of this quarter's results

  3. hiccup(Verb)

    To have the hiccups.

  4. Origin: Alteration of earlier hickock, from hic (onamotopoetic) + -ock (diminuitive suffix). Akin to Low German hick, Danish hikke.


  1. Hiccup

    A hiccup is an involuntary contraction of the diaphragm that may repeat several times per minute. In medicine it is known as synchronous diaphragmatic flutter, or singultus, Latin for the act of catching one's breath while sobbing. The hiccup is an involuntary action involving a reflex arc. Once triggered, the reflex causes a strong contraction of the diaphragm followed about 0.25 seconds later by closure of the vocal cords, which results in the classic "hic" sound. At the same time, the normal peristalsis of the esophagus is suppressed. Hiccups may occur individually, or they may occur in bouts. The rhythm of the hiccup, or the time between hiccups, tends to be relatively constant. A bout of hiccups, in general, resolves itself without intervention, although many home remedies are often used to attempt to shorten the duration. Medical treatment is occasionally necessary in cases of chronic hiccups.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Hiccup

    A spasm of the diaphragm that causes a sudden inhalation followed by rapid closure of the glottis which produces a sound.


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