Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Imagine someone gets hit heavily, or is in excruciating pain; when they try to speak, they sound like they have a sore throat, they are probably cringing.

Mumbling or muttering is speaking with less volume, inaudibly and mostly out of exhaustion. But I am looking for the speech of someone groaning in pain.

What is a word for that?

share|improve this question
    
What's wrong with groaned (a low, mournful sound uttered in pain or grief)? It's a good word. –  medica Mar 16 at 9:21

3 Answers 3

How about croaking?

“No. More,” he croaked, so hoarse he was not certain he had even spoken. (G. R. R. Martin)

share|improve this answer
    
+1 Croak is particularly good as it's a slang synonym for "dying." –  Jack Ryan Mar 18 at 16:42

"Laboured" speech might fit your need.

share|improve this answer

Adding to d'alar'cop's excellent answer:

Struggling to speak

Sputtering It implies ineffectively trying to spit out words.

He tried to speak but the words came sputtering out of him.

Stammering This usually implies stuttering as a speech pathology, but it can also be a natural reaction to severe pain.

After getting shot in the foot, all he could do was stammer in pain, unable to say what happened.

share|improve this answer
1  
Stammering in pain got 20 hits on Google, including this beaut: Imagine this child smearing blood on the walls with this tumor stammering in pain and the parents do nothing. Social injustice is indoctrination. Sputtering in pain got three pages, one entry being Sputtering in pain, you say, "Banana" Imagine a pain rating scale with the descriptions "...Sputtering (5); Spewing (6); Stammering (7); Squealing (8); Screaming (9); Shrieking (10)" Oy, vey, these people are here to examine English Language and Usage! –  medica Mar 16 at 9:08
    
@Susan does that mean that "banana" is not your safe word? The question was not how to describe pain, but how to describe talking while in excruciating pain. –  David M Mar 16 at 9:28
    
(as you say) hahahahahahahahahahahahaha! Good one! Really, if it's not the safe word, it should be!!! (And my pain scale is how the patient is vocalizing their pain. As in, "YOWwwwwww" he squealed.) But thanks for the laugh. :) –  medica Mar 16 at 9:30
    
@DavidM You seem to have overlooked "swearing" ;) –  nxx Mar 16 at 21:33
1  
@DavidM I wasn't serious. Just your "stammering in pain" made me think of "swearing in pain" - sometimes they sound much alike. –  nxx Mar 16 at 21:58

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.