wheezing; wheezed; wheezes

To breathe in a gasping, strained way is to wheeze. You might not know you're allergic to cats until you walk into the house your friend shares with six felines and start to wheeze.

A particular raspy, whistling kind of breathing characterizes a wheeze. You might wheeze because you've got a bad cold, or because your asthma is acting up after that half marathon you just ran. It can be scary to wheeze sometimes, because it feels like you're not getting quite as much air as you need with each breath. Wheeze shares a Scandinavian root with the Old Norse hvoesa, "to hiss."

Definitions of wheeze
  1. noun
    breathing with a husky or whistling sound
    see moresee less
    type of:
    breathing, external respiration, respiration, ventilation
    the bodily process of inhalation and exhalation; the process of taking in oxygen from inhaled air and releasing carbon dioxide by exhalation
  2. verb
    breathe with difficulty
    see moresee less
    type of:
    breathe, respire, suspire, take a breath
    draw air into, and expel out of, the lungs
  3. noun
    (Briticism) a clever or amusing scheme or trick
    “a clever wheeze probably succeeded in neutralizing the German espionage threat”
    see moresee less
    type of:
    scheme, strategy
    an elaborate and systematic plan of action
DISCLAIMER: These example sentences appear in various news sources and books to reflect the usage of the word ‘wheeze'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of or its editors. Send us feedback
Word Family

Look up wheeze for the last time

Close your vocabulary gaps with personalized learning that focuses on teaching the words you need to know.

VocabTrainer -'s Vocabulary Trainer