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[sahyd-l] /ˈsaɪd l/
verb (used without object), sidled, sidling.
to move sideways or obliquely.
to edge along furtively.
a sidling movement.
Origin of sidle
1690-1700; back formation from sideling (earlier spelling sidling misconstrued as present participle of a verb ending in -le)
Related forms
sidlingly, adverb
unsidling, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for sidling
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • And sidling his horse nearer he tore aside the curtains of my litter.

    The Shame of Motley Raphael Sabatini
  • Her mule staggered, sidling close to the rock, and then went on.

    A Set of Six Joseph Conrad
  • They looked at each other, and then saw Polly sidling back to the soldier.

    In Happy Valley

    John Fox
  • Nevertheless he entered hastily, sidling like a dog which expects a kick.

    The Dew of Their Youth S. R. Crockett
  • There is even less in being sick and sidling around in everybody's way.

    Cutting It out Samuel G. Blythe
  • May, sidling reluctantly toward the hall, still watched her mother.

    The Narrow House Evelyn Scott
  • The Mitchel children were sidling up, attracted by the sight of the lady.

    Johnny Ludlow. First Series Mrs. Henry Wood
  • Have you ever seen her sidling out of a room when she thought she wasn't wanted?

    Regiment of Women Clemence Dane
British Dictionary definitions for sidling


verb (intransitive)
to move in a furtive or stealthy manner; edge along
to move along sideways
a sideways movement
Derived Forms
sidler, noun
Word Origin
C17: back formation from obsolete sideling sideways
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 sidling



"to move or go sideways," 1690s, back-formation from obsolete Middle English sidlyng (adv.) "obliquely, sideways; aslant; laterally" (early 14c., perhaps in Old English), from side (n.) + adverbial suffix -ling; altered on analogy of verbs ending in -le. Related: Sidled; sidling. Old English had sidlingweg (n.) "sidelong-way, oblique road."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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