having or exhibiting something that provokes or arouses expectation, interest, or desire, especially that which remains unobtainable or beyond one's reach: a tantalizing taste of success.

Origin of tantalizing

First recorded in 1650–60; tantalize + -ing2
Related formstan·ta·liz·ing·ly, adverbun·tan·ta·liz·ing, adjective
Can be confusedtantalizing titillating
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for tantalizingly

Contemporary Examples of tantalizingly

Historical Examples of tantalizingly

  • Their friend's answers were brief and tantalizingly incomplete.

    Cy Whittaker's Place

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • Frances' behavior to the young doctor was tantalizingly contradictory.

    Kent Knowles: Quahaug

    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • To yield to him was impossible, and yet the thought of it was tantalizingly sweet.

  • "I'll tell you more about her—next time," I said, tantalizingly.

    The Shadow World

    Hamlin Garland

  • His name—” she hesitated   tantalizingly—“is Signor Abraham Lincoln.

    Jerry Junior

    Jean Webster

Word Origin and History for tantalizingly



mid-17c., present participle adjective from tantalize. Related: Tantalizingly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper