Clamor vs clamber

Clamor means an uproar, a loud outcry or sustained noise. Clamor may also be used as an intransitive verb or transitive verb, meaning to make or bring about a loud outcry or a sustained noise. Related words are clamors, clamored, clamorer, clamorous and clamoring. The British spellings are clamour, clamours, clamoured, clamourer, clamorous. Clamor comes from the fourteenth century Latin clamor, a shout, a loud call and from clamare, to cry out.

Clamber means to climb or scale in an awkward or difficult fashion, usually using both hands and feet. It is an intransitive verb. Related words are clambers, clambered, clamboring and clambored. Clambor originated from clamb, the Middle English past tense form of climb, an obsolete word.



Once Texas had the initial line, I am sure there would be an intense clamor to connect to other major cities around the state. (The Dallas Morning News)

Amid the growing clamor, cancer medication has drawn particular ire. (The Wall Street Journal)

It’s all spurred another clamor of hyper-interest in oddities in the sky, on the heels of the CIA acknowledgement last year of the fabled AREA 51 Nevada secret testing ground. (The Post and Courier)

The heavy distorted guitar riffs, the huge echoing effect on Edwards’s baritone vocals and the repetitive clamor of the drums (and guitarist’s darbuka) interweaved into what deemed as a spiritual music sermon of trance, intensity and barbarism. (The Jerusalem Post)

Bus passengers clamber out of window after lorry jam on country road (Western Morning News)

At least 10ft high with no ridges for footing, there’s no option but to clamber onto another team member to try and haul yourself up and over.  (The Guardian)

Many of these battles take place on the bodies of other gods, and you’ll use chains to rappel around them, vines to clamber across them, and magic spells to take them out once and for all. (New Zealand Herald)


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  1. I always thought the whole KLA- prefix was a kind of onomatopoeiatic thing. So many “noisy words” start with the KLA sound.

    Clapper (the hammer-thing to make bells ring). Clang … of bells, the ultimate universal noisemaker. Claxon – certainly not a sonorous sylph; claves – the noisy blocks of Latin music; clatter – what fine china and rude clay earthenware make; clastic – to break, which of course is noisy almost by definition. Clap – of thunderclarion – of bellsclaque – of monkeys! (or so I’ve heard)clapboard – a movie producer’s wake-up callclanks – dungeons, according to Patrick Rothfussclank – clearly onomatopoeiaticclacker – British for clinker, from cement kilns, after their noiseclabber, which makes gooshy sloshing sounds in the churn.


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