Try Our Apps


90s Slang You Should Know


[hweed-l, weed-l] /ˈʰwid l, ˈwid l/
verb (used with object), wheedled, wheedling.
to endeavor to influence (a person) by smooth, flattering, or beguiling words or acts:
We wheedled him incessantly, but he would not consent.
to persuade (a person) by such words or acts:
She wheedled him into going with her.
to obtain (something) by artful persuasions:
I wheedled a new car out of my father.
verb (used without object), wheedled, wheedling.
to use beguiling or artful persuasions:
I always wheedle if I really need something.
Origin of wheedle
First recorded in 1655-65; origin uncertain
Related forms
wheedler, noun
wheedlingly, adverb
unwheedled, adjective
1. flatter, cajole. 2, 3. coax, beguile, inveigle. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for wheedle
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I know that I have but to wheedle you and you, too, will yield!

    Chivalry James Branch Cabell
  • He was used to them, and hitherto he had been able to wheedle her into resumed motion.

  • I'll bet that you may wheedle them round with a compliment or two, just as if they were so many burghers' wives.

    Westward Ho! Charles Kingsley
  • I have seen you wheedle an angry Mahdieh woman into giving you dates.

  • He strove to overcome this fate as a coward would—to kneel to it for compassion—to coax and wheedle it into forgiveness.

    Catherine: A Story William Makepeace Thackeray
  • I believe you could wheedle anybody into doing what he shouldn't do.

  • The infantry sergeant in command of the little party tried to wheedle Case out of his whim, but it was useless.

  • I will never leave you lest you should wheedle it from them.

    The Hound From The North Ridgwell Cullum
British Dictionary definitions for wheedle


to persuade or try to persuade (someone) by coaxing words, flattery, etc
(transitive) to obtain by coaxing and flattery: she wheedled some money out of her father
Derived Forms
wheedler, noun
wheedling, adjective
wheedlingly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: perhaps from German wedeln to wag one's tail, from Old High German wedil, wadil tail
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for wheedle

"to influence by flattery," 1660s, perhaps connected with Old English wædlian "to beg" (from wædl "poverty"), or borrowed by English soldiers in the 17c. German wars from German wedeln "wag the tail," hence "fawn, flatter" (cf. adulation).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for wheedle

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for wheedle

Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for wheedle