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[fraz-uh l] /ˈfræz əl/ Informal.
verb (used with or without object), frazzled, frazzling.
to wear to threads or shreds; fray.
to weary; tire out:
Those six eight-year-olds frazzled me.
the state of being frazzled or worn-out.
a remnant; shred.
Origin of frazzle
1815-25; blend of fray2 and fazzle, Middle English faselin to unravel, cognate with German faseln Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for frazzle
Historical Examples
  • In the first few weeks my artist's ears and eyes and soul were hazed to a frazzle.

    The Harbor Ernest Poole
  • From school she went to college and worked herself to a frazzle.

    The Harbor Ernest Poole
  • He'll ketch the thief, for he's sartainly got Sherlock Holmes beat to a frazzle.

  • "Well, next time don't stay till you're worn to a frazzle," she said.

    In Apple-Blossom Time

    Clara Louise Burnham
  • Face the supernatural—and it is beaten to a frazzle before the fight begins.

    The Ghost Breaker Paul Dickey
  • "How some folks will wear a tune to a frazzle," was the disconcerting reply.

    Heart of Gold

    Ruth Alberta Brown
  • We're just going to lick the whole bunch to a frazzle, and that's easy.

  • But just wait till we get a new one made, we'll beat you to a frazzle!

    Fred Fenton on the Crew Allen Chapman
  • It had the hall bedroom at Mrs. Bowse's boarding-house "beaten to a frazzle."

    T. Tembarom Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • Between the heat and the puzzle we were reduced to a frazzle.

    The Campfire Girls Go Motoring Hildegard G. Frey
British Dictionary definitions for frazzle


(informal) to make or become exhausted or weary; tire out
a less common word for fray2 (sense 1)
(informal) the state of being frazzled or exhausted
a frayed end or remnant
(informal) to a frazzle, absolutely; completely (esp in the phrase burnt to a frazzle)
Word Origin
C19: probably from Middle English faselen to fray, from fasel fringe; influenced by fray²
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
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Word Origin and History for frazzle

c.1825, "to unravel" (of clothing), from East Anglian variant of 17c. fasel "to unravel, fray" (as the end of a rope), from Middle English facelyn "to fray" (mid-15c.), from fasylle "fringe, frayed edge," diminutive of Old English fæs "fringe." Related: Frazzled, frazzling. Cf. German Faser "thread, fiber, filament," Middle Dutch vese "fringe, fiber, chaff." Probably influenced in form by fray (v.). As a noun, from 1865, American English.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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