The two words (adjectives) I found in Yahoo Answers site, that perhaps (I am not sure) describe the sound of turning pages, when they rifled by the wind: fluttering and flapping.

Other than those adjectives mentioned above, is there any noun or noun phrase that refer to the sound of turning pages when being rifled by a wind. The word that I need doesn't necessarily have to do with the sound produced when we manually (by hands) turn the page(s) of books.

I heard the ______ of the turning pages, as they were rifled by the wind.

picture of turning pages

  • 1
    Flap, flutter (as you suggested), slap, whipping, whirring... or you might just refer to hearing the wind rifling the pages - most readers would understand that as a sound on its own.
    – Mike C
    Oct 2, 2018 at 10:40
  • @Mari-LouA, it's been edited by James. :)
    – Ahmed
    Oct 2, 2018 at 12:11

3 Answers 3


That's a flutter. It looks like a verb, but it's also a noun.

Flutter means to move back and forth rapidly. Flags flutter in the wind. Leaves flutter to the ground. Flutter also exists as a noun—you might feel a flutter in your heart when you're excited.

So your example sentence should be:

  • I heard the flutter of the turning pages, as they were rifled by the wind.

Someone can regard it as a paper flutter as well.

  • 1
    Flutter isn't a sound, it's a movement.
    – AndyT
    Oct 2, 2018 at 10:53
  • 1
    You can still hear such a movement. Good answer flutter is.
    – user22542
    Oct 2, 2018 at 11:01
  • @user22542 - Yes, and I can hear the sound of a car skidding, but "skidding" is not "a word denoting the sound" which is what the OP asked for. "Squeal" or "screech" would be appropriate instead.
    – AndyT
    Oct 2, 2018 at 11:10

I'd go for the verb to rustle:

to make a succession of slight, soft sounds, as of parts rubbing gently one on another, as leaves, silks, or papers.


In particular I'd use the -ing form:

I heard the rustling of the turning pages, as they were rifled by the wind.

  • But I did not downvote this.
    – user296301
    Oct 2, 2018 at 11:33
  • Is rustling a noun here?
    – user296301
    Oct 2, 2018 at 12:00
  • Rustling sounds perfect, wether it's a gerund or noun.
    – user296301
    Oct 2, 2018 at 12:01
  • Rustle is also a noun, as mentioned by Oxford and Cambridge Dictionaries.
    – Ahmed
    Oct 2, 2018 at 12:07
  • @JamesWolpert - It's definitely a gerund and/or a noun... (I've never been too hot on whether a gerund is a noun or whether it's just acting as one. If you scroll down the dictionary.com link, in the British dictionary section it does state that "rustling" can be a noun, but I don't know whether it is in this case or not.)
    – AndyT
    Oct 2, 2018 at 13:17

I looked for an adjective for the sound of flipping pages as in when you thumb through a book to find the right page and couldn't find one that fit so I made up my own sound, "fripping." I'm going with that.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

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