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2017 Word of the Year

whiffle

[hwif-uh l, wif-] /ˈʰwɪf əl, ˈwɪf-/
verb (used without object), whiffled, whiffling.
1.
to blow in light or shifting gusts or puffs, as the wind; veer or toss about irregularly.
2.
to shift about; vacillate; be fickle.
verb (used with object), whiffled, whiffling.
3.
to blow with light, shifting gusts.
Origin of whiffle
1550-1560
First recorded in 1550-60; whiff1 + -le
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for whiffling
Historical Examples
  • Tom anybody will do, so long as they are not of this whiffling century.

  • What shameful pimping to the whiffling understandings of the timid!

  • It was the whiffling energy of the tornado that alone saved her.

    Jack Tier or The Florida Reef James Fenimore Cooper
  • "I know nothing to compare with the whiffling of the north star," said Sancho, promptly.

    Mercedes of Castile J. Fenimore Cooper
  • A convulsive squeeze and creaking, whiffling sounds heralded a fresh outburst.

    Beyond John Galsworthy
  • For a sound like the whiffling of a wind through dry sticks combined with the creaking of a saw had, impinged on his senses.

    The Burning Spear John Galsworthy
British Dictionary definitions for whiffling

whiffle

/ˈwɪfəl/
verb
1.
(intransitive) to think or behave in an erratic or unpredictable way
2.
to blow or be blown fitfully or in gusts
3.
(intransitive) to whistle softly
Word Origin
C16: frequentative of whiff1
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 whiffling

whiffle

v.

"flicker or flutter as if blown by the wind," 1660s; see whiff. The noun meaning "something light or insignificant" (1670s) is preserved in whiffle-ball (1931).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Word Value for whiffling

22
24
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