onomatopoeic term for don't say or be quite [quiet]

ryooster

Senior Member
Korean
Dear all,

What's the right onomatopoeic term for don't say or be quite.
the sound of when person put his/her second finger across lips.

Shhit/sheit/sheeit? I can't find which one is the most right spelling.

Thanks
ryooster
 
  • Natalisha

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Dear all,

    What's the right onomatopoeic term for don't say or be quiet.
    the sound of when person put his/her second finger across lips.

    Shhit/sheit/sheeit? I can't find which one is the most right spelling.

    Thanks
    ryooster


    As far as I know it's just "sh".

    You mean "quiet" of course.:)
     

    madsh33p

    Senior Member
    English - UK, German - Germany
    Shhit/sheit/sheeit?

    It is simply sh, as Natalisha said or shush

    Be careful when you pronounce it as you wrote it above, (no offense but I had to laugh when I saw it) because it looks like different pronunciations of the word "shit"/"shite".
     
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    Cameljockey

    Senior Member
    British English
    Sh is correct but it's unusual to see it written with just the two letters, It's usually given more of either depending on your personal preference, and depending on the urgency with which it's being said. Perhaps shhh, or sshhh, or ssshhhh! Don't overdo it though. And as madsheep says, definitely no 'it'! :)
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    It is often 'sh' as at the end of to 'hush' (to become quiet or to quieten), but apparently there are variations such as s-s-s-h, and sh-sh.(OED)
    No vowel sound and no t.

    Depending on the context and need, the verb hush can be used instead, " Hush!"
    I hushed the children.
    I told the children to hush.
    Everybody hushed as the chewing gum bubble grew bigger and bigger.

    :)
    Hermione
     

    Majorbloodnock

    Senior Member
    British English
    N.B. I think onomatopoeia is probably not the right term here...

    An onomatopoeia is a word that approximates the sound it refers to... Silence has no sound.
    Perhaps, but the interjection is most often directed towards kids, and we all know that a low level of white noise is the best we can hope for; silence is far, far too optimistic.
     

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    Shush is my preferred option. It also works as a handy verb: 'tell someone to be quiet':
    Don't shush me when I'm in the middle of speaking!

     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    N.B. I think onomatopoeia is probably not the right term here...

    An onomatopoeia is a word that approximates the sound it refers to... Silence has no sound.
    It's not an onomatopoeia of silence, it's an onomatopoeia of the sibilant sound someone makes to tell someone else to be quiet.
     

    Einstein

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    It's not an onomatopoeia of silence, it's an onomatopoeia of the sibilant sound someone makes to tell someone else to be quiet.
    If someone says "shhhh!", it's just a sound made with the mouth; I don't think it's a word. If you say "He shushed me", that's an onomatopoeia, because "shush" is a word (here a verb) that imitates the sound made.

    I'm saying that off the top of my head, someone will prove me wrong! But instinctively I just feel that shhhh! is not an onomoatopoeia.
     

    Cameljockey

    Senior Member
    British English
    It's not an onomatopoeia of silence, it's an onomatopoeia of the sibilant sound someone makes to tell someone else to be quiet.

    In that case surely every word is onomatopoeic, because 'ashtray' is onomapotopoeic of the sound that someone makes when they say ashtray....

    Sh as a word doesn't sound like the noise that's made, it actually is the noise thats made. Buzz is an onomatopoeic word but bzzzzzz (if it existed as a word) would not be.
     

    Cameljockey

    Senior Member
    British English
    If someone says "shhhh!", it's just a sound made with the mouth; I don't think it's a word. If you say "He shushed me", that's an onomatopoeia, because "shush" is a word (here a verb) that imitates the sound made.

    I'm saying that off the top of my head, someone will prove me wrong! But instinctively I just feel that shhhh! is not an onomoatopoeia.

    We are along the same lines here, except that sh is certainly a word:

    dictionary.reference.com :

    Word Origin & History

    sh
    exclamation used to urge or request silence, 1847. The gesture of putting a finger to the lips to express silence is attested from Roman times.
     

    Einstein

    Senior Member
    UK, English
    OK, it's a word if they say so.
    Another example: Hmmm is a sound; when we say He hummed and ha'ed (or however you spell it:D), these verbs are onomatopoeias.
     

    Arrius

    Senior Member
    English, UK
    sh, hush, and shush, imitating the noise made when air escapes under some restraint from the mouth are as onamatopoeic as bang, slap, and puff. Hiss too but that does not mean be quiet! though it might induce a so called artiste to leave the stage.
    shush (v.) 1905, imitative of the command to be quiet. (Online Etymological Dictionary).

    Ashtray does not imitate any sound, though it does sound pleasing to the ear if one forgets the connotations of toxic air and cancer.
    Btw, note the Americanism hush up!
     
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    Cameljockey

    Senior Member
    British English
    sh, hush, and shush, imitating the noise made when air escapes under some restraint from the mouth are as onamatopoeic as bang, slap, and puff. Hiss too but that does not mean be quiet! though it might induce a so called artiste to leave the stage.
    shush (v.)
    dictionary.gif
    1905, imitative of the command to be quiet. Online Etymological Dicionary

    Ashtray does not imitate any sound, though it does sound pleasing to the ear if one forgets the connotations of toxic air and cancer.
    Btw, note the Americanism hush up!

    OK I've played devil's advocate for long enough, I have to accept that a written representation of a sound (in the form of wors like h'm, sh, ah) cannot actually 'be' the sound, it's just letters on paper (or a screen) and so it must always be onomatopoeic.
     

    Natalisha

    Senior Member
    Russian
    If someone says "shhhh!", it's just a sound made with the mouth; I don't think it's a word. If you say "He shushed me", that's an onomatopoeia, because "shush" is a word (here a verb) that imitates the sound made.

    I'm saying that off the top of my head, someone will prove me wrong! But instinctively I just feel that shhhh! is not an onomoatopoeia.

    I completely agree with you, Einstein. Saying in my post 2 'it's just "sh"' I answered the second part of the question:
    the sound of when person put his/her second finger across lips.
    And of course it's not an onomoatopoeia.


    What's the right onomatopoeic term for don't say or be quite.
    I'm with those who think it's "shush".
     
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