quibble

[ kwib-uhl ]
/ ˈkwɪb əl /

noun

an instance of the use of ambiguous, prevaricating, or irrelevant language or arguments to evade a point at issue.
the general use of such arguments.
petty or carping criticism; a minor objection.

verb (used without object), quib·bled, quib·bling.

to equivocate.
to carp; cavil.

QUIZZES

DO YOU KNOW THIS VOCABULARY FROM "THE HANDMAID'S TALE"?

"The Handmaid's Tale" was required reading for many of us in school. Everyone else has probably watched the very popular and addictive TV show. Do you remember this vocabulary from the book, and do you know what these terms mean?
Question 1 of 10
decorum

Origin of quibble

1605–15; perhaps derivative (cf. -le) of quib gibe, apparently akin to quip

OTHER WORDS FROM quibble

quib·bler, nounout·quib·ble, verb (used with object), out·quib·bled, out·quib·bling.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Example sentences from the Web for quibbler

  • If there is one thing I find it difficult to have Christian patience with, it is a quibbler.

    Hildegarde's Harvest|Laura E. Richards
  • You are a quibbler, I vow; but I would not hear your worst enemy accuse you of being orthodox.

    A Nest of Linnets|Frank Frankfort Moore
  • He was adroit and quick, and was rather a quibbler than a great lawyer.

    The Memories of Fifty Years|William H. Sparks
  • With him the quibbler, the doctrinaire, the political economist, has no place.

    Sir Charles Napier|Sir William Francis Butler

British Dictionary definitions for quibbler

quibble
/ (ˈkwɪbəl) /

verb (intr)

to make trivial objections; prevaricate
archaic to play on words; pun

noun

a trivial objection or equivocation, esp one used to avoid an issue
archaic a pun

Derived forms of quibble

quibbler, nounquibbling, adjective, nounquibblingly, adverb

Word Origin for quibble

C17: probably from obsolete quib, perhaps from Latin quibus (from quī who, which), as used in legal documents, with reference to their obscure phraseology
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