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Silbar is to whistle, to make a noise with your mouth when you pucker and blow.

Silbo is the noun, whistle, the actual noise.

A silbato is a whistle. An instrument used to produce a whistling noise.

  • 1

    The Collins Concise dictionary mentions ‘silbido’ as the noun. Perhaps ‘silbo’ is peculiar to Mexico.

    Petrichor on May 9th, 2008
  • 2

    One of my dictionaries shows that ‘silbido’ is the ‘action and effect of whistling’ meaning the noise. And ‘silbo’ is ‘the sharp sound produced by whistling.’ Two different entries, but seem to mean the exact same thing.

    Another dictionary lists ‘silbido’ and ‘silbo’ in the same entry and they mean the noise made by whistling–the noun.

    So they are both nouns and mean essentially the same thing. Now the question is, what is the difference? Anyone know?

    David on May 17th, 2008


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