- 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.
- to equivocate.
- to carp; cavil.
Origin of quibble
Synonyms for quibbleSee more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
Related Words for quibblerdoubter, complainant, complainer, caviler, censor, carper, nitpicker, niggler, zapper, muckraker, disparager, maligner, slanderer, worrier, nagger, faultfinder, criticizer, aristarch, censurer, fretter
Examples from the Web for quibbler
Historical Examples of quibbler
With him the quibbler, the doctrinaire, the political economist, has no place.Sir Charles Napier
Sir William Francis Butler
If there is one thing I find it difficult to have Christian patience with, it is a quibbler.Hildegarde's Harvest
Laura E. Richards
He was adroit and quick, and was rather a quibbler than a great lawyer.The Memories of Fifty Years
William H. Sparks
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
- to make trivial objections; prevaricate
- archaic to play on words; pun
- a trivial objection or equivocation, esp one used to avoid an issue
- archaic a pun
Word Origin for quibble
1610s, "a pun, a play on words," probably a diminutive of obsolete quib "evasion of point at issue," based on an overuse of Latin quibus? in legal jargon, which supposedly gave it the association with trivial argument. Meaning "equivocation, evasion of the point" is attested from 1660s.
"equivocate, evade the point, turn from the point in question or the plain truth," 1650s, from quibble (n.). Earlier "to pun" (1620s). Related: Quibbled; quibbling.