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to move making a noise

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Written by Liz Potter

In this weekly post, we bring more useful content from the Macmillan Dictionary to English language learners. In this series of language tips to accompany the Real Vocabulary theme we look at how you can expand your vocabulary in English by using different words and expressions instead of core vocabulary items.

This set of language tips explores the words and phrases we use to describe movement. This week’s tip looks at verbs that describe the noises made by people and things when they move:



chug if a vehicle chugs, it makes a series of low sounds as it moves slowly:

  • The train chugged into the station.

clatter to go somewhere making a series of short loud sounds:

  • They clattered along the pavement in their high heels, talking loudly.

crash about or around to make loud sounds when moving around, as if you are bumping into things or breaking things:

  • I could hear my brother crashing about upstairs.

patter to move somewhere making a series of short quiet sounds with your feet:

  • Lily pattered over to the window.

rustle to make a low sound like the one that leaves or sheets of paper make when they move:

  • A nurse rustled into the room.

thud to make a low dull sound when moving somewhere or hitting a surface:

  • Heavy footsteps thudded across the front porch.

Did you know that Macmillan Dictionary includes a full thesaurus? This page lists more ways to say ‘to make sounds while moving‘.

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Liz Potter

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