Definition for SING

SING, v.i. [pret. sung, sang; pp. sung. Sax. singan, syngan; Goth. siggwan; G. singen; D. zingen; Sw. siunga; Dan. synger. It would seem from the Gothic that n is casual, and the elements Sg. If so, it coincides with say and seek, all signifying to strain, urge, press or drive.]

  1. To utter sounds with various inflections or melodious modulations of voice, as fancy may dictate, or according to the notes of a song or tune. The noise of them that sing do I hear. – Exod. xxxii.
  2. To utter sweet or melodious sounds, as birds. It is remarkable that the female of no species of birds ever sings. And singing birds in silver cages hung. – Dryden.
  3. To make a small shrill sound; as, the air sings in passing through a crevice. O'er his head the flying spear / Sang innocent, and spent its force in air. – Pope.
  4. To tell or relate something in numbers or verse. Sing / Of human hope by cross events destroy'd. – Prior.

Return to page 143 of the letter “S”.