- a person or thing that feels.
- a proposal, remark, hint, etc., designed to bring out the opinions or purposes of others: Interested in an accord, both labor and management were putting out feelers.
- Zoology. an organ of touch, as an antenna or a tentacle.
- Also called feeler gauge. Engineering. a gauge having several blades of known thickness, used for measuring clearances.
- Nautical. a device for indicating that the lead of a mechanical sounding device has come to the bottom.
Origin of feeler
Related Words for feeleroverture, antenna, hand, tentacle, finger, claw, whisker, barbel, vibrissa, essay, advance, hint, probe, sample, intimation, test, proposal, approach, prospectus, palp
Examples from the Web for feeler
Historical Examples of feeler
"I see you have Diablo entered for the Brooklyn," Faust put out as a feeler.Thoroughbreds
W. A. Fraser
Roll in dried and powdered coral, and put a piece of feeler in each.The Skilful Cook
He expected to feel the jerk of the electric shock of the feeler.The Whispering Spheres
Russell Robert Winterbotham
Just a feeler of Frémont's—his army's three miles over there in the woods.The Long Roll
Note the knob on the end of the butterfly's feeler (Fig. 143).Agriculture for Beginners
Charles William Burkett
- a person or thing that feels
- an organ in certain animals, such as an antenna or tentacle, that is sensitive to touch
- a remark designed to probe the reactions or intentions of other people
Word Origin and History for feeler
early 15c., "one who feels," agent noun from feel (v.). Of animal organs, 1660s. Transferred sense of "proposal put forth to observe the reaction it gets" is from 1830. Related: Feelers.
- A slender body part used for touching or sensing. The antennae of insects and the barbels of catfish are feelers.
Idioms and Phrases with feeler
see put out feelers.