v. thrilled, thrill·ing, thrills
1. To cause to feel a sudden sensation of pleasure or delight; excite greatly: was thrilled to learn that she had won the contest.
2. To cause to quiver, tremble, or vibrate.
1. To feel a sudden sensation of pleasure or delight: "His answer came that afternoon and she thrilled to see the handwriting" (Susan Minot).
2. To quiver, tremble, or vibrate.
a. A sudden feeling of pleasure or excitement: It gave him a thrill to learn their secret.
b. A source or cause of pleasure or excitement: the thrills of the amusement park.
2. A quivering or trembling caused by sudden excitement or emotion.
3. Medicine A slight palpable vibration associated with a cardiac murmur and certain other cardiac or respiratory conditions.
[Middle English thrillen, alteration of thirlen, to pierce, from Old English thȳrlian, from thȳrel, hole; see terə-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.