The high-pitched sound you make when you see a ghost is an example of a shriek.
When you start yelling and screaming, this is an example of a time when you shriek.
Origin of shriek
- Middle English skriken, shriken of Scandinavian origin Old Norse skrækja
From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition
- From Middle English scrycke, probably from Old Norse skrÃ¦kja, itself probably of imitative origin. Cognate to Swedish skrika (skrik), German schreien (Schrei), both with the same meaning, and Albanian grykÃ« (“throat").