vibration

A vibration is a shaking motion. If you feel a strong vibration in your car every time you step on the brakes, it might be a good idea to take it to a mechanic.

You might feel a vibration in your floor when your neighbor is playing his music too loudly, and you'll know a thunderstorm is approaching when you feel the vibration of your trembling dog at your side. The rapid back and forth movement or quivering of an electric toothbrush or a mild earthquake is a vibration. The Latin vibratus, "move quickly to and fro" is the root word.

Definitions of vibration
  1. noun
    a shaky motion
    synonyms: palpitation, quiver, quivering, shakiness, shaking, trembling
    see moresee less
    types:
    tremolo
    (music) a tremulous effect produced by rapid repetition of a single tone or rapid alternation of two tones
    tremor
    shaking or trembling (usually resulting from weakness or stress or disease)
    essential tremor
    tremor of unknown cause (usually of the hands and head) that develops in older people; often mistaken for Parkinsonism but is not life-threatening and can usually be kept under control
    type of:
    motion
    a state of change
  2. noun
    the act of vibrating
    synonyms: quiver, quivering
    see moresee less
    types:
    shudder, tremor
    an involuntary vibration (as if from illness or fear)
    type of:
    motility, motion, move, movement
    a change of position that does not entail a change of location
  3. noun
    (physics) a regular periodic variation in value about a mean
    synonyms: oscillation
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 5 types...
    hide 5 types...
    ripple
    (electronics) an oscillation of small amplitude imposed on top of a steady value
    transient
    (physics) a short-lived oscillation in a system caused by a sudden change of voltage or current or load
    beat
    a single pulsation of an oscillation produced by adding two waves of different frequencies; has a frequency equal to the difference between the two oscillations
    resonance
    a vibration of large amplitude produced by a relatively small vibration near the same frequency of vibration as the natural frequency of the resonating system
    sympathetic vibration
    (physics) vibration produced by resonance
    type of:
    undulation, wave
    (physics) a movement up and down or back and forth
  4. noun
    a distinctive emotional aura experienced instinctively
    “that place gave me bad vibrations
    synonyms: vibe
    see moresee less
    type of:
    air, atmosphere, aura, patina
    a distinctive but intangible quality surrounding a person or thing
Word Family
EDITOR’S CHOICE

Test prep from the experts

Boost your test score with programs developed by Vocabulary.com’s experts.

  • Proven methods: Learn faster, remember longer with our scientific approach.
  • Personalized plan: We customize your experience to maximize your learning.
  • Strategic studying: Focus on the words that are most crucial for success.

SAT/PSAT

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 8 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week

TOEFL

$29.95
  • Number of words: 500+
  • Duration: 10 weeks or less
  • Time: 1 hour / week