[ nuhz-uh l ]
/ ˈnʌz əl /

verb (used without object), nuz·zled, nuz·zling.

verb (used with object), nuz·zled, nuz·zling.


an affectionate embrace or cuddle.

Origin of nuzzle

1375–1425; late Middle English noselen to grovel; origin uncertain
Related formsun·nuz·zled, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for nuzzle

British Dictionary definitions for nuzzle


/ (ˈnʌzəl) /


to push or rub gently against the nose or snout
(intr) to nestle; lie close
(tr) to dig out with the snout

Word Origin for nuzzle

C15: nosele, from nose (n)
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

Word Origin and History for nuzzle



early 15c., "to bring the nose to the ground," back-formation from noselyng "on the nose, prostrate," frequentative of nose (v.); meaning "burrow with the nose" is first attested 1520s; that of "lie snug" is from 1590s, influenced by nestle, or by nursle, frequentative of nurse. Related: Nuzzled; nuzzling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper