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[med-l] /ˈmɛd l/
verb (used without object), meddled, meddling.
to involve oneself in a matter without right or invitation; interfere officiously and unwantedly:
Stop meddling in my personal life!
Origin of meddle
1250-1300; Middle English medlen < Old French me(s)dler, variant of mesler (French mêler) < Vulgar Latin *misculāre, frequentative of Latin miscēre to mix
Related forms
meddler, noun
meddlingly, adverb
overmeddle, verb (used without object), overmeddled, overmeddling.
unmeddled, adjective
unmeddling, adjective
unmeddlingly, adverb
Can be confused
medal, meddle, metal, mettle.
intervene, intrude, pry. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for meddler
Historical Examples
  • Nobody must tell me I'm a meddler, butting in where I have no business.

  • You chose to reject my love and invite that meddler Sedgwick into our affairs.

    The Pirate of Panama William MacLeod Raine
  • A meddler is always a muddler;' how well I remember her saying that.

    Doctor Luttrell's First Patient

    Rosa Nouchette Carey
  • The managers of big business attributed the panic to "Theodore the meddler."

    The New Nation Frederic L. Paxson
  • You are as far as possible from a meddler: your fault is that you keep too much to yourself.

    A Pessimist Robert Timsol
  • I will have no spy upon my actions—no meddler to thwart me in my will.

    The Phantom Ship Frederick Marryat
  • Agnes was about sixty years old, an ex-slave, a meddler, and liar.

    Negro Tales Joseph Seamon Cotter
  • The gladiators thrust aside the meddler, and rushed to the attack.

    A Book of Golden Deeds Charlotte M. Yonge
  • And I have every reason to think that the meddler is the minister.

    Captain Pott's Minister Francis L. Cooper
  • They laugh at the idea and he is accused of being a meddler, rogue and thief.

    Dorothy's Tour Evelyn Raymond
British Dictionary definitions for meddler


verb (intransitive)
(usually foll by with) to interfere officiously or annoyingly
(usually foll by in) to involve oneself unwarrantedly: to meddle in someone's private affairs
Derived Forms
meddler, noun
meddling, adjective
meddlingly, adverb
Word Origin
C14: from Old French medler, ultimately from Latin miscēre to mix
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 meddler

late 14c., "practitioner," agent noun from meddle (v.). Meaning "one who interferes, a nuisance" is mid-15c.



early 14c., "to mingle, blend, mix," from Old North French medler (Old French mesler, 12c., Modern French mêler) "to mix, mingle, to meddle," from Vulgar Latin *misculare (source of Provençal mesclar, Spanish mezclar, Italian mescolare, meschiare), from Latin miscere "to mix" (see mix (v.)). From late 14c. as "busy oneself, be concerned with, engage in;" also disparagingly "interfere, be officious, make a nuisance of oneself" (the notion is of meddling too much). From mid-14c. to 1700, it also was a euphemism for "have sexual intercourse." Related: Meddled; meddling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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