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English Vocabulary - Vocabulario de inglés
WAYS OF LAUGHING
  • laugh: express joy by making a sound, moving the face or body.
    She splashed water on Nick and we all began laughing.
  • chuckle: laugh quietly, because you are thinking about something funny.
    What are you chuckling about? I don't see anything funny.
  • giggle: laugh quietly and repeatedly because you are nervous or embarrassed.
    She spilt the wine on the tablecloth and then giggled nervously at me.
  • give somebody the giggles: make somebody start giggling.
  • titter: laugh quietly, unkindly at something embarrassing.
    After she ended the lecture, she heard someone tittering.
  • snigger (GB) / snicker (US): laugh quietly, unkindly at something that is not supposed to be funny.
    When the teacher tripped on the steps, the boys sniggered.
  • roar / howl / shriek with laughter: laugh very loudly.
    It was such a good comedy that when it finished, he was still roaring with laughter.
  • chortle: give a loud chuckle of pleasure or amusement.
    When I told her the joke, she started to chortle with delight.
  • cackle: laugh loudly in a high voice.
    When I told her the joke, she started cackling and couldn't stop!
  • guffaw: laugh noisily.
    They guffawed at what their baby had done.
  • jeer: laugh at somebody or shout unkind things at them.
    The president was jeered by a crowd of protesters.
  • burst into laughter: suddenly start laughing.
    The class burst into laughter.
  • laugh your head off: (informal) laugh a lot and loudly.
    He told us a joke after another, and we laughed our heads off!
  • smile: make one's mouth curve upwards, in order to be friendly or because one is happy.
    As the boy left, he smiled at his mother and waved.
  • beam: smile very happily.
    The mother looked at her son and beamed proudly.
  • grin: smile widely.
    When she knew she had won the prize, she grinned broadly.
  • simper: smile in a silly and annoying way.
    He simpered at the boys as he spoke.
  • smirk: smile in an unpleasant way, to show that you are pleased by somebody's bad luck.
    The kids smirked when the teacher fell on the floor.
  • sneer: smile in an unkind way, showing no respect for somebody.
    She sneered at his boyfriend's musical tastes.

Related idioms

  • laugh in somebody's face: to behave in a way that shows no respect for others.
    I told her my opinion and she just laughed in my face.
  • be laughing all the way to the bank: make a lot of money without making much effort.
  • somebody will be laughing on the other side of your face: used to mean that although you are happy now, you will be in trouble later.
  • be laughed out of court (US): be rejected because people think it is completely stupid.
    His idea was laughed out of court.
  • laugh up your sleeve: be secretly happy because you played a trick on somebody or you criticized somebody without him knowing.
  • laugh something off: pretend that something is less serious than it really is by laughing about it.
    The president laughed off rumors that he would resign.
  • laugh like a drain: laugh heartily.
    John liked my joke so much, he laughed like a drain.

 

We thank María Celeste Navarro (from Buenos Aires, Argentina) and Francis Dixon-Clarke (from Sao Paulo, Brazil) for their contribution.

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