[ hand-ling ]
/ ˈhænd lɪŋ /


a touching, grasping, or using with the hands.
the manner of treating or dealing with something; management; treatment.
the manual or mechanical method or process by which something is moved, carried, transported, etc.


of or relating to the process of moving, transporting, delivering, working with, etc.: The factory added a 10 percent handling charge for delivery.

Origin of handling

before 1000; Middle English; Old English handlung (noun). See handle, -ing1

Definition for handling (2 of 2)


[ han-dl ]
/ ˈhæn dl /


verb (used with object), han·dled, han·dling.

verb (used without object), han·dled, han·dling.

to behave or perform in a particular way when handled, directed, managed, etc.: The troops handled well. The jet was handling poorly.

Origin of handle

before 900; (noun) Middle English handel, Old English hand(e)le, derivative of hand; (verb) Middle English handelen, Old English handlian (cognate with German handlen, Old Norse hǫndla to seize), derivative of the noun

Related forms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for handling

British Dictionary definitions for handling (1 of 2)


/ (ˈhændlɪŋ) /


the act or an instance of picking up, turning over, or touching something
treatment, as of a theme in literature
  1. the process by which a commodity is packaged, transported, etc
  2. (as modifier)handling charges
law the act of receiving property that one knows or believes to be stolen

British Dictionary definitions for handling (2 of 2)


/ (ˈhændəl) /


verb (mainly tr)

Derived Forms

handleable, adjectivehandled, adjectivehandleless, adjective

Word Origin for handle

Old English; related to Old Saxon handlon (vb), Old High German hantilla towel
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

Idioms and Phrases with handling


In addition to the idioms beginning with handle

  • handle to one's name
  • handle with gloves

also see:

  • fly off the handle
  • get a fix (handle) on
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.