a musical instrument of the viol family.
violin: Her aunt plays first fiddle with the state symphony orchestra.
Nautical. a small ledge or barrier raised in heavy weather to keep dishes, pots, utensils, etc., from sliding off tables and stoves.
British Informal. swindle; fraud.
to play on the fiddle.
to make trifling or fussing movements with the hands (often followed by with): fiddling with his cuffs.
to touch or manipulate something, as to operate or adjust it; tinker (often followed by with): You may have to fiddle with the antenna to get a clear picture on the TV.
to waste time; trifle; dally (often followed by around): Stop fiddling around and get to work.
British Informal. to cheat.
to play (a tune) on a fiddle.
to trifle or waste (usually used with away): to fiddle time away.
Bookbinding. to bind together (sections or leaves of a book) by threading a cord through holes cut lengthwise into the back.
to falsify: to fiddle the account books.
to cheat: to fiddle the company out of expense money.
Idioms about fiddle
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use fiddle in a sentence
While aroids, lilies, and Sago palms are dangerous for cats and dogs, other popular plants, including ficuses like the fiddle leaf fig and euphorbs like the poinsettia can be irritating, albeit not deadly, too.Swap your toxic household plants for these 4 pet-friendly alternatives | Margo Milanowski | December 10, 2021 | Popular-Science
Bill had planned to release songs Eva recorded with a fiddle player and that had a western swing feel.Twenty-five years after her death, Eva Cassidy’s music is as timeless as ever | John Kelly | January 26, 2021 | Washington Post
On Wall Street, Bank of America plays a perpetual second fiddle to JPMorgan Chase Co., the only U.S. bank that holds more assets.Megabanks Have The Federal Prison System Locked Up | Center for Public Integrity | October 2, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
"He looked at it and he started to fiddle with the cable," Mrs. Perez told The Telegraph.
Willie Polk played the fiddle and another boy, call him Shoefus, played the guitar, like I did.Stanley Booth on the Life and Hard Times of Blues Genius Furry Lewis | Stanley Booth | June 7, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
His dad, an electrical engineer, was always bringing home technology that the young Sapan would fiddle with.New York’s Hologram King Is Also the City’s Last Pro Holographer | Nina Strochlic | May 27, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
There the lingua franca is Cajun French, and folks love to fiddle, dance and most of all, eat.
Then he clapped his fiddle under his chin and without more ado struck up "Bobbing Joan."The Pit Town Coronet, Volume I (of 3) | Charles James Wills
Their jurisdictions overlapped and the Gascon would play second fiddle to no one save to his great brother-in-law.Napoleon's Marshals | R. P. Dunn-Pattison
A view of the duchess's ball-room, or of the dining-table of the earl, will supersede all occasion for lengthy fiddle-faddle.
fiddle-cases seem to have been used almost solely for travelling purposes.Antonio Stradivari | Horace William Petherick
Then you'll concide that you are there but you oughtn't to be, and kind of slide out without your hat and forget your fiddle.The Soldier of the Valley | Nelson Lloyd
British Dictionary definitions for fiddle
informal any instrument of the viol or violin family, esp the violin
a violin played as a folk instrument
time-wasting or trifling behaviour; nonsense; triviality
nautical a small railing around the top of a table to prevent objects from falling off it in bad weather
British informal an illegal or fraudulent transaction or arrangement
British informal a manually delicate or tricky operation
at the fiddle or on the fiddle informal engaged in an illegal or fraudulent undertaking
face as long as a fiddle informal a dismal or gloomy facial expression
fit as a fiddle informal in very good health
play second fiddle informal to be subordinate; play a minor part
to play (a tune) on the fiddle
(intr often foll by with) to make restless or aimless movements with the hands
(when intr, often foll by about or around) informal to spend (time) or act in a careless or inconsequential manner; waste (time)
(often foll by with) informal to tamper or interfere (with)
informal to contrive to do (something) by illicit means or deception: he fiddled his way into a position of trust
(tr) informal to falsify (accounts, etc); swindle
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
Cultural definitions for fiddle
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Other Idioms and Phrases with fiddle
In addition to the idiom beginning with fiddle
- fiddle while Rome burns
- fit as a fiddle
- hang up (one's fiddle)
- play second fiddle
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.