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waffle1

[wof-uh l]
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noun
  1. a batter cake with a pattern of deep indentations on each side, formed by the gridlike design on each of the two hinged parts of the metal appliance (waffle iron) in which the cake is baked.
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adjective
  1. Also waf·fled. having a gridlike or indented lattice shape or design: a waffle pattern.
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Origin of waffle1

First recorded in 1735–45, waffle is from the Dutch word wafel

waffle2

[wof-uh l]Informal.
verb (used without object), waf·fled, waf·fling.
  1. to speak or write equivocally: to waffle on an important issue.
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verb (used with object), waf·fled, waf·fling.
  1. to speak or write equivocally about: to waffle a campaign promise.
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noun
  1. waffling language.
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Origin of waffle2

1890–95; orig. dial. (Scots, N England): to wave about, flutter, waver, be hesitant; probably waff + -le
Related formswaf·fler, nounwaf·fling·ly, adverbwaf·fly, adjective

waffle3

[wof-uh l]
verb (used without object), waf·fled, waf·fling. British.
  1. to talk foolishly or without purpose; idle away time talking.
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Origin of waffle3

1695–1705; orig. dial. (N England); apparently waff to bark, yelp (imitative) + -le
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

vacillate, flip-flop, equivocate, change, yo-yo

Examples from the Web for waffle

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • It took it a long time, this little piece of waffle, to go down.

  • They looked as though they had been ironed with waffle irons.

  • Those that bake one waffle at a time are the handsomest and most manageable.

  • This the Widow at once spread upon the hot Waffle and offered it to the King.

  • Perry managed a waffle and a sausage, but then he went off to his room.

    Makers

    Cory Doctorow


British Dictionary definitions for waffle

waffle1

noun
    1. a crisp golden-brown pancake with deep indentations on both sides
    2. (as modifier)waffle iron
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Word Origin

C19: from Dutch wafel (earlier wæfel), of Germanic origin; related to Old High German wabo honeycomb

waffle2

verb
  1. (intr often foll by on) to speak or write in a vague and wordy mannerhe waffled on for hours
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noun
  1. vague and wordy speech or writing
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Derived Formswaffler, nounwaffling, adjective, nounwaffly, adjective

Word Origin

C19: of unknown origin
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 waffle

n.

1744, from Dutch wafel "waffle," from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German wafel, from Proto-Germanic *wabila- "web, honeycomb" (cf. Old High German waba "honeycomb," German Wabe), related to Old High German weban, Old English wefan "to weave" (see weave (v.)). Sense of "honeycomb" is preserved in some combinations referring to a weave of cloth. Waffle iron is from 1794.

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v.

1690s, "to yelp, bark," frequentative of waff "to yelp" (1610); possibly of imitative origin. Figurative sense of "talk foolishly" (1701) led to that of "vacillate, equivocate" (1803), originally a Scottish and northern English usage. Related: Waffled; waffling.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper