AskDefine | Define frisson

Dictionary Definition

frisson n : an almost pleasurable sensation of fright; "a frisson of surprise shot through him" [syn: shiver, chill, quiver, shudder, thrill, tingle]

User Contributed Dictionary



From frigeo.


  • /fʁi.sɔ̃/
  • /fRi.sO~/


(plural frissons)
  1. A French word intended to convey the shiver or thrill of fright that can be strangely pleasurable. As when reading good horror fiction. Sometimes accompanied by the sensation of the hairs raising on the back of the neck. Note that this is not synonymous with fear which is a more powerful and visceral feeling.
  2. An experience of intense excitement.

Extensive Definition

A cold chill is an involuntary shaking similar to shivering. Unlike shivering however, it is not caused by temperature, menopause or anxiety but rather is an emotionally triggered response when one is deeply affected to things such as music , speech or recollection.

See also


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