Meaning of tickling

Meaning of tickling DEFAULT
tick·​le|\ ˈti-kəlHow to pronounce tickle (audio)\
tickled; tickling\ˈti-​k(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce tickle (audio)\

transitive verb

1: to touch (a body part, a person, etc.) lightly so as to excite the surface nerves and cause uneasiness, laughter, or spasmodic movements

2a: to excite or stir up agreeably : pleasemusic … does more than tickle our sense of rhythm— Edward Sapir

b: to provoke to laughter or merriment : amusewere tickled by the clown's antics

3: to touch or stir gentlya pianist tickling the ivories

intransitive verb

1: to have a tingling or prickling sensationmy back tickles

2: to excite the surface nerves to prickle


antonyms for tickle


Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

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How to use tickle in a sentence

"It might tickle him to go to the senate, particularly if he had a score to clean up in connection with it," remarked Ware.


Twas with this hungry curiosity that I demanded of the fool of Twist Tickle how he had managed so great a thing.


I names she from a schooner that calls at Pinch-In Tickle every spring.




verbentertain; make laugh

Roget's 21st Century Thesaurus, Third Edition Copyright © 2013 by the Philip Lief Group.

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tickle - Meaning in Hindi

Word Forms / Inflections

tickles(noun plural)
tickled(verb past tense)
tickling(verb present participle)
tickles(verb present tense)

Definitions and Meaning of tickle in English


  1. the act of tickling
    Synonyms : tickling, titillation
  2. a cutaneous sensation often resulting from light stroking
  1. touch or stroke lightly
    - The grass tickled her calves
  2. feel sudden intense sensation or emotion
    Synonyms : thrill, vibrateExample
    - he was thrilled by the speed and the roar of the engine
  3. touch (a body part) lightly so as to excite the surface nerves and cause uneasiness, laughter, or spasmodic movements
    Synonyms : titillate, vellicate

Synonyms of tickle

tickling, titillation, thrill, vibrate, titillate, vellicate


Tickling is the act of touching a part of a body in a way that causes involuntary twitching movements or laughter. The word "tickle"(help·info) evolved from the Middle English tikelen, perhaps frequentative of ticken, to touch lightly.

Also see "Tickling" on Wikipedia.

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English to Hindi Dictionary: tickle

Meaning and definitions of tickle, translation of tickle in Hindi language with similar and opposite words. Spoken pronunciation of tickle in English and in Hindi.

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What tickle means in Hindi, tickle meaning in Hindi, tickle definition, explanation, pronunciations and examples of tickle in Hindi.

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verb (used with object),tick·led,tick·ling.

to touch or stroke lightly with the fingers, a feather, etc., so as to excite a tingling or itching sensation in; titillate.

to poke some sensitive part of the body so as to excite spasmodic laughter.

to excite agreeably; gratify: to tickle someone's vanity.

to excite amusement in: The clown's antics really tickled the kids.

to get, move, etc., by or as by tickling: She tickled him into saying yes.

to stroke the underbelly of (a fish, especially a trout) until it goes into a trancelike state, making it possible to scoop it out of the water: the ability to tickle a fish, often contested as more mythical than actual, has been written of and embellished on since ancient times: He tickled that fish until it stopped moving, and the next thing I knew, we were having trout for dinner!

verb (used without object),tick·led,tick·ling.

to be affected with a tingling or itching sensation, as from light touches or strokes: I tickle all over.

to produce such a sensation.


an act or instance of tickling.

a tickling sensation.



We could talk until we're blue in the face about this quiz on words for the color "blue," but we think you should take the quiz and find out if you're a whiz at these colorful terms.

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Which of the following words describes “sky blue”?

Idioms about tickle

    tickled pink, Informal. greatly pleased: She was tickled pink that he had remembered her birthday.

Origin of tickle

First recorded in 1300–50; Middle English tikelen; further origin uncertain; perhaps frequentative of tiken “to touch lightly”; see origin at tick1 (in obsolete sense “to touch lightly”)



Words nearby tickle

tickety-boo, tickey, tick fever, ticking, ticklace, tickle, tickled pink, tickle one's fancy, tickler, tickler coil, tickler file Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021


What is a basic definition of tickle?

Tickle means to touch sensitive body parts in order to cause laughter, to stroke lightly to cause an itching sensation, or to excite. Tickle has several other senses as a verb and a noun.

You might tickle your baby brother as part of playing to get him to laugh. Tickling involves touching sensitive body parts, such as the stomach or armpits, to cause involuntary laughter. It is usually done with the fingers, fingernails, or a feather. If someone is especially easy to make laugh by tickling, they are said to be ticklish.

  • Real-life examples: Parents often tickle babies or their children to make them laugh or cheer them up. Kids might tickle each other while playing. A person should always have permission before they tickle you.
  • Used in a sentence: When my daughter is sad, I can usually cheer her up by tickling her. 

Tickle can also mean to cause an itching or tingling sensation. It is also used to mean to experience an itching or tingling sensation.

  • Real-life examples: An uncomfortable sweater may tickle your neck. A pleasant smell can tickle your nose. A bug bite on your leg may cause your leg tickle.
  • Used in a sentence: The wind tickled the hairs on the back of my neck. 

Tickle can also be used in this sense as a noun to mean an itching or tingling sensation.

  • Used in a sentence: I felt a slight tickle on my knee after going through the poison ivy bush. 

Tickle can also mean to excite or to please.

  • Used in a sentence: The gorgeous dress tickled her sense of style. 

Where does tickle come from?

The first records of tickle come from the early 1300s. It comes from the Middle English verb tikelen. Any earlier origin is uncertain.

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What are some other forms related to tickle?

What are some synonyms for tickle?

What are some words that share a root or word element with tickle

What are some words that often get used in discussing tickle?

How is tickle used in real life?

Tickle most often means to make someone laugh by lighting touching sensitive body parts.

Try using tickle!

Which of the following words would most likely be used to describe someone who is being tickled?

A. pain
B. laughter
C. sadness
D. cold

Words related to tickle

gratify, pat, thrill, please, amuse, excite, delight, titillate, enchant, itch, pet, convulse, stroke, caress, tingle, touch, entertain, divert, stimulate, brush

How to use tickle in a sentence

  • At home, buyers build their own tacos using the accompanying tender corn tortillas, Carolina rice, sparkling pico de gallo and a salsa verde that leaves a tickle of heat in your throat.

    Like a good neighbor, Pennyroyal Station is there for you|Tom Sietsema|January 22, 2021|Washington Post

  • She can’t smell and feels anxiety at the pang of a headache or tickle of a cough, worried that somehow she has been stricken anew by a virus that has already taken so much from her.

    ‘I said goodbye to my sister through a computer screen’|Holly Bailey|January 2, 2021|Washington Post

  • So instead she self-monitors and loads up on vitamin C and zinc, hoping the tickle in her throat disappears.

    As thousands of athletes get coronavirus tests, nurses wonder: What about us?|Kent Babb|December 3, 2020|Washington Post

  • It feels like a strong tickle in a space behind the eyes and is capable of inducing tears.

    Hong Kong’s citywide COVID-19 testing has become a barometer of public trust|eamonbarrett|September 9, 2020|Fortune

  • He obliged and as we stood for the picture my CP caused me to involuntarily tickle him.

    Gaza to Jersey: A Star is Born|Maysoon Zayid|November 25, 2013|DAILY BEAST

  • Best Moment: When Galifianakis attempts to make Cera tickle his thigh (with disappointing results).

    Justin Bieber, Jon Hamm & the Best of 'Between Two Ferns' (VIDEO)|Anna Klassen|September 26, 2013|DAILY BEAST

  • Guys, it distinctly says “tickle me” Elmo, not “hand-to-hand combat over me” Elmo.

    Eight Biggest Elmo Scandals: Kevin Clash, Katy Perry & More (VIDEO)|Kevin Fallon|November 14, 2012|DAILY BEAST

  • Nearly as outrageous was the $2,000 some early buyers were reselling their tickle-me toys for on secondhand markets.

    Eight Biggest Elmo Scandals: Kevin Clash, Katy Perry & More (VIDEO)|Kevin Fallon|November 14, 2012|DAILY BEAST

  • The stretchy, leathery ring keeps you hard while the eyelashes tickle the vadge.

    Eastbound & Down’s Kenny Powers Lists His Favorite Things|Kenny Powers|February 17, 2012|DAILY BEAST

  • "It might tickle him to go to the senate, particularly if he had a score to clean up in connection with it," remarked Ware.

    A Hoosier Chronicle|Meredith Nicholson

  • Twas irresistible––to be accomplished with the fool of Twist Tickle and his clever punt.

    The Cruise of the Shining Light|Norman Duncan

  • Thereafter––a hundred paces––I caught sight of the lights of the Twist Tickle meeting-house.

    The Cruise of the Shining Light|Norman Duncan

  • Twas with this hungry curiosity that I demanded of the fool of Twist Tickle how he had managed so great a thing.

    The Cruise of the Shining Light|Norman Duncan

  • I names she from a schooner that calls at Pinch-In Tickle every spring.

    Left on the Labrador|Dillon Wallace

British Dictionary definitions for tickle


to touch, stroke, or poke (a person, part of the body, etc) so as to produce pleasure, laughter, or a twitching sensation

(tr)to excite pleasurably; gratify

(tr)to delight or entertain (often in the phrase tickle one's fancy)

(intr)to itch or tingle

(tr)to catch (a fish, esp a trout) by grasping it with the hands and gently moving the fingers into its gills

tickle pinkortickle to deathinformalto please greatlyhe was tickled pink to be elected president


a sensation of light stroking or itching

the act of tickling

Canadian(in the Atlantic Provinces) a narrow strait

Derived forms of tickle

tickly, adjective

Word Origin for tickle

C14: related to Old English tinclian, Old High German kizziton, Old Norse kitla, Latin titillāre to titillate

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012


Tickling meaning of

Meaning of tickle in English:


Pronunciation /ˈtɪk(ə)l/

See synonyms for tickle

Translate tickle into Spanish


[with object]
  • 1Lightly touch or prod (a person or a part of the body) in a way that causes mild discomfort or itching and often laughter.

    ‘I tickled him under the ears’

    • ‘She squealed with laughter as I started tickling her.’
    • ‘I smiled as we kissed, her touch tickling me slightly.’
    • ‘I collapsed in laughter and began tickling him in earnest.’
    • ‘He grabbed her waist and tickled her lightly on the belly.’
    • ‘I opened my mouth to tell him not to tickle me, but couldn't because I was soon doubled over with laughter as he tickled me.’
    • ‘Doc had a smile on his face and appeared to be dreaming, so we let him dream a little longer and then I lightly tickled him awake.’
    • ‘I pulled her flat against me and flipped over so I was on top and lightly tickled her.’
    • ‘The boy had a big grin on his face and with the hand resting on her waist, he tickled her lightly.’
    • ‘He wrapped it around his body, the soft velvet tickling his naked body.’
    • ‘The corn that grows from the ground reached over his small body, the leaves tickled his shirtless body as he passed through the towering rows.’
    • ‘He gently nuzzled his head into my neck, tickling me.’
    • ‘Del played along, tickling Jenny around her neck and arms.’
    • ‘‘Good morning sexy,’ he said as he kissed her neck, tickling her with his mustache.’
    • ‘Claire traced her lips along Mark's neck, tickling him softly.’
    • ‘She grabbed a handful of grass and shoved it down my neck, tickling me mercilessly.’
    • ‘When he was tickled, he broke into loud laughter from time to time.’
    • ‘Liam started tickling her all over, Jess was screaming with laughter.’
    • ‘Texas burst into laughter, and fell over, Jude relentlessly tickling her.’
    • ‘Amber giggled and gasped lightly as he swirled her around while tickling her.’
    • ‘He grinned and continued tickling her until she fell off the couch in laughter.’
    1. 1.1no object(of a part of the body) have a sensation of mild irritation or discomfort.

      ‘his throat had stopped tickling’

      • ‘It feels like a strange prickling sensation, and it tickles around my arms.’
      • ‘I wanted him to stop, but it tickled so much that I couldn't help but laugh.’
      • ‘On some days though when you step outside your throat tickles slightly and your eyes water, often so little that you barely realize it.’
      • ‘My mouth got dry, my throat tickled and I started gagging.’
      • ‘But it wasn't that annoying tingle that tickles so much it hurts feeling, it was a nice feeling, a pleasant feeling, that made me warm inside, it made me want to smile, and never stop.’
      • ‘My eyes are tickling, there's a warm sensation in the corners.’
      • ‘When we kiss it tickles now, but that doesn't stop that spark that's been there.’
      • ‘‘Well, I can't stand it if my hair gets into my face,’ I continue, ‘cos it tickles and gets all itchy.’’
      • ‘George crawled down the page, onto my arm - ‘That tickles!’’
      • ‘It was an odd, creeping feeling, that made her body tickle and itch at the same time.’
      • ‘I'd have a rabbit if they didn't make my nose tickle and my eyes itch.’
    2. 1.2Touch with light finger movements.

      with object and complement‘tickling the safe open took nearly ninety minutes’

      • ‘Vicki released a slow and deep breath, her fingers absently tickling the corners of her Bible.’
      • ‘He tickled a ball wide down the leg side to be caught by the wicketkeeper.’
    3. 1.3Catch (a trout) by lightly rubbing it so that it moves backwards into the hand.

      ‘the skill of a poacher tickling a trout’

      • ‘We arrived in Clapham, a cheerful start, with screeching children playing on the beck banks as a teacher splashed them while pretending to show how to tickle a trout.’
      • ‘Forget any romantic notions of setting horse hair traps for rabbits in the pale dawn and then settling down to tickle trout from the mossy banks of the stream.’
  • 2Appeal to (someone's taste, curiosity, etc.)

    ‘here are a couple of anecdotes that might tickle your fancy’

    • ‘It was hard to say why anymore - at first it had been a joke, a game, and then because something about his friend's reserve tickled his curiosity.’
    • ‘To tickle your taste buds, the food festival offers a wide range of dishes, including pastas, salads, soups, desserts and pizzas.’
    • ‘These spicy and saucy ribs will tickle your taste buds and keep you coming back for more.’
    • ‘They wander through an ancient forest and encounter creatures that tickle the curiosity of the child.’
    • ‘Have a go at Thai, Indian, Greek - whatever tickles your taste buds.’
    • ‘Robert carried a mysterious brown box in his arms, which tickled Tracy's cat-like curiosity.’
    • ‘‘I sketch a bit,’ she answered, his continued questions beginning to tickle her curiosity.’
    • ‘She had realized the silliness of her love for Mr. Knightley, and Mr. Martin's continued love had tickled her vanity.’
    • ‘This information tickled the Professor's interest.’
    • ‘The curtain, however, once installed, caught his attention and tickled his curiosity.’
    • ‘Why not tickle their impulses and your bottom line by carrying and displaying unique giftware and stationery items?’
    • ‘But if you've been keeping up to date with his latest offerings then no doubt this will tickle your fancy too.’
    • ‘Hang on, I'll keep this post open and add updates when I come across anything that'll tickle your fancy.’
    • ‘The site is great to read, but I've edited and written lots of stuff I thought was worthy that didn't tickle his fancy.’
    • ‘In that case, this film might not tickle your fancy, as it would probably just remind you of a boring day at the office.’
    • ‘Besides, the literary selections are the things that really tickle my fancy.’
    • ‘Asparagus has tickled the taste buds to such an extent this season that sales of the queen of vegetables have risen faster than any other vegetable.’
    • ‘Germany's bangers have lost their ability to tickle taste buds, according to the former head of the nation's biggest sausage-maker.’
    • ‘I may not know much, but I do happen to know of some interesting projects that will tickle your tailfeather.’
    • ‘If you love the taste of passion fruit, this pink liqueur will certainly tickle your tastebuds.’

    stimulate, interest, appeal to, excite, arouse, captivate

    View synonyms
    1. 2.1Cause (someone) amusement or pleasure.

      ‘he is tickled by the idea’

      • ‘‘We've found that people are tickled by the idea of seeing such a familiar, everyday product used in a novel way,’ says Miller.’
      • ‘I was tickled by the idea of making a film for posterity.’
      • ‘I was always thinking that you were already my brother-in-law, and the idea just tickled me.’
      • ‘I was tickled and amused by the presentation of my waffle, but it was soggy, flaccid and certainly not as much fun to eat as it was to look at.’
      • ‘On paper, the idea has tickled fans of either franchise for many a year.’
      • ‘As for me, out of all the wonderful science fictiony possibilities here, the one that really tickles me is the idea of a language chip.’
      • ‘The idea of him putting on that suit tickles me.’
      • ‘Many of them were tickled at the idea of playing host to a man who might one day prominently play a role in a revolutionary Marxist movement such a long way away from their homes in Mayfair and Morningside.’
      • ‘Afterwards, MacSween senior was so tickled by the idea of vegetarians venturing into a butcher's shop that he started producing the vegetarian version.’
      • ‘And I just am really tickled and pleased that we have people like our current secretary of defense and our current secretary of state.’
      • ‘Rafe rolled his eyes in amusement, tickled at her reaction.’
      • ‘Momma was pleased, the cops were tickled, and baby just kept on dreaming.’

      amuse, entertain, divert, please, delight, gladden, cheer up, satisfy, gratify

      View synonyms


in singular
  • 1An act of tickling someone.

    ‘Dad gave my chin a little tickle’

    • ‘He seemed glad of the company after a long, dark winter and was soon swimming through my legs and even accepting a tickle under the chin.’
    • ‘She felt his soft kiss and the tickle of his long hair on her cheek.’
    • ‘He'd make humorous, taunting faces or just out-do her hits with an unserious blow or a tickle.’
    • ‘He wouldn't settle for any nap, and any time he looked close to being sleepy Akra Jr managed to scupper it with an inappropriate tickle, loud shout or noisy toy.’
    • ‘I don't often snuggle up in the mornings, so she took it as a bonus, turned over on her back and presented her tummy for a tickle, feet firmly in the air.’
    • ‘They are very cute, and with so many people poking their fingers through the cage all day long are already tame and welcome a tickle.’
    • ‘Eventually he did and was foolish enough to come over for a tickle.’
    • ‘No jumping up for a tickle when I've dropped my bag and sat down on the settee.’
    • ‘When I got up, she came out from under the settee to say hello and have a tickle.’
    • ‘Normally the tickler is someone who desires to express intimacy, emotion, and affection through their tickling - in other words the tickle is intended as a friendly gesture.’
    • ‘I hopped into the backseat of my auntie Joanne's car, next to Carla, who sat in the middle of Crystal and I, and gave her a quick tickle.’
    • ‘My mother was silent, and instead of responding, she pressed a warm hand on my stomach, and attempted a tickle.’
    • ‘It nuzzled against Aben's cheek and was rewarded with a tickle and tender words.’
    1. 1.1A sensation like that of being lightly touched or prodded.

      ‘I had a tickle between my shoulder blades’

      • ‘The point barely touched her skin; she only felt a small tickle.’
      • ‘It's a barely noticeable sensation, just a whisper of a tickle.’
      • ‘I can't remember if Holly tucked both arms under and anyway, what if he wanted to itch a tickle on his nose?’
      • ‘She could feel it like a tickle in the crash of sensations her body was experiencing.’
      • ‘The pain was nothing more than a tickle as he floated along the black stream.’
      • ‘However, the pain was little more than a tickle compared to his wing being cut off but it hurt none the less.’
      • ‘I used to be able to touch her and hug her without feeling that familiar tickle up my spine, but now I couldn't.’
      • ‘And then his lips brushed lightly against her forehead, eliciting a tickle that she instinctively squirmed against.’
      • ‘There was blood flowing onto my leg, I could feel the tickle of the little droplets sliding.’
      • ‘I have eschewed cough syrups and lozenges preferring to suck on the occasional spoonful of honey, which seems to soothe the tickle enough to let me get to sleep.’
      • ‘It didn't hurt, it was more like an unpleasant tickle.’
      • ‘I reached up to scratch a tickle on my right cheek and felt a hand not my own brushing my face gently, back and forth.’
      • ‘It was just a tickle, and if he shifted, it would go away, but he didn't want to disturb Lex by moving.’
      • ‘It wasn't a tickle or a scratch, and it didn't sting or irritate.’
      • ‘Adam was the inspiration for the first of the Mr Men books when he asked his father what a tickle looked like.’
      • ‘She felt a tickle across her ankle, shook it off and looked to see what it was.’
      • ‘The man, feeling a tickle on his arm, looks down and sees the mosquito.’
      • ‘A slight movement - a tickle really - on his left shin caught his attention.’
      • ‘I wake in a darkening room with a tickle in my arm.’
      • ‘I was puzzled for a moment, until I felt a slight tickle along my arm.’


    be tickled pink
    • Be extremely amused or pleased.

      • ‘take her along—she'd be tickled pink’
      • ‘I know he would have been tickled pink, a little embarrassed and mightily amused.’
      • ‘Nurses from the new breast unit at Airedale Hospital were tickled pink by a supermarket's fundraising effort.’
      • ‘Cheery ladies from Bolton were tickled pink when they learned that laughing can make people slim.’
      • ‘‘I was tickled to death to pick up the paper and read the letters to the editor,’ he said.’
      • ‘The few articles I saw, in my comings and goings, were so good that I was tickled pink to have had them under my name.’
      • ‘I'd be tickled pink to run it.’
      • ‘Melanie was tickled pink when she saw his picture.’
      • ‘Almost every vendor I talked to was tickled pink with the sales they garnered.’
      • ‘I was tickled pink by your article and could not agree with you more!’
      • ‘Jenna was tickled pink that Amanda would take the time to make her look good in front of her neighbours.’
    tickle the ivories
    • Play the piano.

      • ‘the resident pianist will be tickling the ivories’
      • ‘The winner of the 1992 Preston Guild Piano Competition will be tickling the ivories from 1.05 pm.’
      • ‘Williams loves to play the piano and has entertained his staff with some wonderful work tickling the ivories, as well as exhibiting a sound understanding of the nuanced area of wine appreciation.’
      • ‘The month is rounded off in style with the Alexander Brothers, one of Scotland's leading bands tickling the ivories on the 24th of the month.’
      • ‘Unsurprisingly, as the son of possibly the world's most famous amateur jazz pianist, Eastwood started his musical life tickling the ivories.’
      • ‘American David Bartley might well have been a drummer if he hadn't discovered his talent for tickling the ivories!’
      • ‘Plus, Marit strums guitar and Marion tickles the ivories.’
      • ‘For a couple of hours most evenings this tousle-haired young musician tickles the ivories with an eclectic but always virtuoso style.’
      • ‘A pianist is preparing to tickle the ivories for 15 hours to raise money for her church and help people battle breast cancer.’
      • ‘But at 81, he can't tickle the ivories as smoothly as he used to.’
      • ‘Anyone with an urge to tickle the ivories is free to use the grand piano in the atrium.’


Middle English (in the sense ‘be delighted or thrilled’): perhaps a frequentative of tick, or an alteration of Scots and dialect kittle ‘to tickle’ (compare with kittle).

What is the meaning of the word TICKLE?

Knismesis and gargalesis

scientific terms for tickling

Knismesis and gargalesis are the scientific terms, coined in 1897 by psychologistsG. Stanley Hall and Arthur Allin,[1] used to describe the two types of tickling. Knismesis refers to the light, feather-like type of tickling. This type of tickling generally does not induce laughter and is often accompanied by an itching sensation.[2] Gargalesis refers to harder, laughter-inducing tickling, and involves the repeated application of high pressure to sensitive areas.[2]

While the two terms are used in academic papers, they do not appear in many dictionaries and their origin is rarely declared. The term knismesis comes from the Greek knismos (κνησμός) meaning 'itching'.[3] The term gargalesis stems from the Greek gargalizo (γαργαλίζω) meaning 'to tickle'.[4] The suffix -esis is used to form nouns of action or process.[5]


The knismesis phenomenon requires low levels of stimulation to sensitive parts of the body, and can be triggered by a light touch or by a light electric current. Knismesis can also be triggered by crawling insects or parasites, prompting scratching or rubbing at the ticklish spot, thereby removing the pest. It is possible that this function explains why knismesis produces a similar response in many different kinds of animals.[2] In a famous example, described in Peter Benchley's Shark!, it is possible to tickle the area just under the snout of a great white shark, putting it into a near-hypnotictrance.[6]


The gargalesis type of tickle works on primates (which include humans), and possibly on other species.[7] For example, ultrasonic vocalizations described as "chirping", which play into social behavior and even have therapeutic effects, are reported in rats in response to human tickling.[8][9][10][11][12] However, adult female rats may find the tickling sensation adverse.[13] Because the nerves involved in transmitting "light" touch and itch differ from those nerves that transmit "heavy" touch, pressure and vibration, it is possible that the difference in sensations produced by the two types of tickle is due to the relative proportion of itch sensation versus touch sensation.[14] While it is possible to trigger a knismesis response in oneself, it is usually impossible to produce gargalesthesia, the gargalesis tickle response, in oneself.[2]Hypergargalesthesia is the condition of extreme sensitivity to tickling.[15] The words knismesis and gargalesis were both used by Susie Dent in an episode of the BBC game show, Would I Lie to You? (Season 11, episode 4).


  1. ^Hall, G. S.; Allin, A. (1897). "The psychology of tickling, laughing and the comic". The American Journal of Psychology. 9 (1): 1–42. doi:10.2307/1411471. JSTOR 1411471.
  2. ^ abcdHarris, Christine R. (1999), "The mystery of ticklish laughter", American Scientist, 87 (4): 344(8), Bibcode:1999AmSci..87..344H, doi:10.1511/1999.4.344
  3. ^"Definition of knismós in Liddell & Scott". Greek Word Study Tool. Perseus Digital Library.
  4. ^"Definition of gargalizein in Liddell & Scott". Greek Word Study Tool. Perseus Digital Library.
  5. ^"Tickling A Cat's Tummy: Invite For Cuddles Or Lacerated Hands?". Star Media Group. 2018-04-09.
  6. ^"The word knismesis". New Scientist. 7 December 2002.
  7. ^Provine, R. R. (1996). "Laughter". American Scientist. 84: 38–45.
  8. ^"Science News 2001 - requires signup". Archived from the original on 2004-05-05. Retrieved 2016-06-07.
  9. ^Wöhr, M.; Schwarting, R.K. (2007). "Ultrasonic communication in rats: Can playback of 50-kHz calls induce approach behavior?". PLOS ONE. 2 (12): e1365. Bibcode:2007PLoSO...2.1365W. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0001365. PMC 2137933. PMID 18159248.
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