[snuhf-uh l]
See more synonyms for snuffle on
verb (used without object), snuf·fled, snuf·fling.
  1. to draw air into the nose for the purpose of smelling something; snuff.
  2. to draw the breath or mucus through the nostrils in an audible or noisy manner; sniffle; snivel.
  3. to speak through the nose or with a nasal twang.
  4. to whine; snivel.
verb (used with object), snuf·fled, snuf·fling.
  1. to utter in a snuffling or nasal tone.
  1. an act or sound of snuffling.
  2. snuffles, a condition of the nose, as from a cold, causing snuffling (usually preceded by the).
  3. a nasal tone of voice.

Origin of snuffle

1575–85; < Dutch snuffelen to nose (in something), derivative of snuffen to snuff1 with frequentative suffix -el-; see -le
Related formssnuf·fler, nounsnuf·fling·ly, adverbsnuf·fly, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for snuffle

Historical Examples of snuffle

British Dictionary definitions for snuffle


  1. (intr) to breathe noisily or with difficulty
  2. to say or speak in a nasal tone
  3. (intr) to snivel
  1. an act or the sound of snuffling
  2. a nasal tone or voice
  3. the snuffles a condition characterized by snuffling
Derived Formssnuffler, nounsnuffly, adjective

Word Origin for snuffle

C16: from Low German or Dutch snuffelen; see snuff 1, snivel
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 snuffle

1580s, from Dutch or Flemish snuffelen "to sniff about, pry," related to Dutch and Flemish snuffen "to sniff" (see snuff (v.2)). Related: Snuffled; snuffling.


1764, "sound made by snuffling," from snuffle (v.). Old English had snofl (n.) "phlegm, mucus." The snuffles "troublesome mucous discharge from the nostrils" is from 1770.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

snuffle in Medicine


  1. To breathe noisily, as through a blocked nose.
  1. The act of snuffling.
  2. snuffles Obstructed nasal respiration, especially in a newborn, sometimes due to congenital syphilis.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.