AskDefine | Define shudder

Dictionary Definition



1 an almost pleasurable sensation of fright; "a frisson of surprise shot through him" [syn: frisson, shiver, chill, quiver, thrill, tingle]
2 an involuntary vibration (as if from illness or fear) [syn: tremor]


1 shake, as from cold; "The children are shivering--turn on the heat!" [syn: shiver]
2 tremble convulsively, as from fear or excitement [syn: shiver, throb, thrill]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A shivering tremor.
  2. A moment of almost pleasurable fear; a frisson.



A shivering tremor
A moment of almost pleasurable fear; a frisson
Translations to be checked


  1. To shake nervously, as if from fear.
  2. To vibrate jerkily.



To shake nervously, as if from fear
To vibrate jerkily

See also

Extensive Definition

Shivering is a bodily function in response to early hypothermia in warm-blooded animals. When the core body temperature drops, the shivering reflex is triggered. Muscle groups around the vital organs begin to shake in small movements in an attempt to create warmth by expending energy. Shivering can also be a response to a fever as a person may feel cold, though their core temperature is already elevated.
Located in the dorsomedial portion of the hypothalamus near the wall of the third ventricle is an area called the primary motor center for shivering. This area is normally inhibited by signals from the heat center in the anterior hypothalamic-preoptic area but is excited by cold signals from the skin and spinal cord. Therefore, this center becomes activated when the body temperature falls even a fraction of a degree below a critical temperature level.
Increased muscular activity results in wasted heat - here the heat is utilized for warmth.
Shivering can also appear after surgery. This is known as post-surgical shivering.

External links

shudder in German: Zittern
shudder in French: Frissonnement
shudder in Italian: Brivido
shudder in Hebrew: צמרמורת
shudder in Dutch: Koude rilling
shudder in Polish: Dreszcze
shudder in Portuguese: Arrepio

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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