mutter

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Related to muttered: muttered under his breath

mutter (something) under (one's) breath

To murmur something in such a soft, quiet voice that others cannot hear it distinctly. (Said especially of rude, unpleasant, complaining, or impertinent remarks.) I could hear Bill muttering something under his breath on the way back to his desk after his annual review. Don't you dare mutter curse words under your breath at me, young lady!
See also: breath, mutter

mutter about (someone or something)

1. To speak or utter something about someone or something in a very low, indistinct tone. Oh, don't mind me, I'm just muttering to myself about what's the fastest way to get home from here. I could hear the kids muttering something about a plan to cut school that day, but I couldn't make out the details of it.
2. To murmur, whisper, or grumble in an angry, disgruntled manner about someone or something. We all left the meeting muttering about the additional hours we'd have to work, but, in the end, what choice did we have? Instead of just muttering about the boss like you always do, why don't you register a complaint with HR?
See also: mutter

mutter about someone or something

to grumble or complain about someone or something. Are you muttering about me? What is your complaint? Why is everyone muttering about the food here? It is excellent.
See also: mutter

mutter something about someone or something

to say something softly and indistinctly about someone or something. I heard him mutter something about being late. Sharon is muttering something about Dave. What does she mean?
See also: mutter

*under one's breath

Fig. [spoken] so softly that almost no one can hear it. (*Typically: curse ~; curse some-one or something ~; mutter ~; mutter something ~; say something ~.) John was muttering something under his breath, and I don't think it was very pleasant. I'm glad he said it under his breath. If he had said it out loud, it would have caused an argument.
See also: breath
References in periodicals archive ?
"People muttered 'disgusting' as the Leave aircraft with the banner flew back over as Jo Cox's husband Brendan talked about his dead wife "Somebody in the Leave camp should radio the pilot unless it is deliberately provocative.
French federation president Noel Le Graet on Tuesday played down an incident involving midfielder Samir Nasri who put a finger to his mouth and muttered 'shut up' towards the press
2 : to complain in a low voice : grumble <She muttered about the bad food.>
``We are bloody rubbish at the moment,'' one of them muttered to his mate.
"Oh, so you've actually saved us money by buying them," I muttered.
Kenneth Sullivan swore and muttered at the officers outside his Church Street home in Ely, Cardiff, after a heavy drinking session on the Jubilee Weekend.
But De Niro, who has backed the pounds 7.5 million production, was his usual taciturn self, and when asked what he was looking forward to this evening he merely muttered: "The whole thing."
But assisted living has its own problems, and grizzled nursing home industry veterans might be forgiven a muttered, "Welcome to the world, kid."
After placing plants in a giant grid, researchers raced after pollinators and muttered into a tape recorder the ID number of each plant visited.
"I bet Democrats run this place," he muttered as we walked our, and he rolled his, way to the check-in stand.
They have no memory of the epistle and gospel read in Latin during Mass, mysteriously muttered by the priest with his back to the congregation.
It just shows how little things have changed since Emory first muttered the immortal phrase "Oh, Mary, it takes a fairy to make something pretty" in The Boys in the Band back in 1968.
"Quit faking the show," he muttered, daring us to think hard about what we just saw.
``It doesn't look very mauve to me,'' muttered the Head Gardener.
Whenever someone has 'muttered', they've been asked to put a donation in the box."