General English

  • noun a speech problem that involves hesitating and repeating sounds when speaking
  • verb to repeat sounds when speaking, e.g. because of feeling nervous


  • noun a speech difficulty in which someone repeats parts of a word or the whole word several times or stops to try to pronounce a word
  • verb to speak with a stammer

Origin & History of “stammer”

To stammer is etymologically to be ‘impeded’ in speech. The word comes (along with Dutch stameren) from a prehistoric west Germanic *stamrōjan, which was derived from the base *stam-, *stum- ‘check, impede’ (source also of English stem ‘halt, check’ and stumble).