verb (used without object), whis·tled, whis·tling.
verb (used with object), whis·tled, whis·tling.
- whist drive,
- whistle dixie,
- whistle for,
- whistle in the dark,
- whistle pig,
- whistle stop
- to bring a stop to; halt: Congress has blown the whistle on all unnecessary expenditures for the program.
- to expose (wrongdoing or wrongdoers): to blow the whistle on corruption in high places.
Origin of whistle
Examples from the Web for whistle
“Clean as a whistle,” says a senior investigator involved in the case.
But admit it: at the first whistle, we all paid attention, to a part of the world that would usually prefer us all to butt out.
He is on trial along with three others, and Bogucki is blowing the whistle on government practices he says are not fair play.A Navy Lawyer Cries Foul on Gitmo’s Kafkaesque Legal System|Eleanor Clift|September 26, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Not a lot of air tooting that whistle, no matter what the video would lead viewers to believe.
Down Fred went and the ref blew his whistle, piercing Croatian hearts as he pointed to the penalty spot.Brazil Slips Past Croatia, Thanks to Yuichi Nishimura|Tunku Varadarajan|June 12, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Captain Jekyl threw away the remnant of his cigar, with a little movement of pettishness, and began to whistle an opera air.St. Ronan's Well|Sir Walter Scott
I don't know how long I had been asleep, but what made me wake up was the whistle of a locomotive.Roy Blakeley's Camp on Wheels|Percy Keese Fitzhugh
Their own frantic shouts some time ago, even Sandy's whistle, had been unheard and unheeded.The Quiver, 1/1900|Anonymous
It was a whistle, and it had such a penetrating quality that Will, at first, thought it was a bird.The Great Sioux Trail|Joseph Altsheler
I want a chance to see it, and Jack began to whistle a cheerful tune.Five Thousand Miles Underground|Roy Rockwood
- to inform (on)
- to bring a stop (to)
Word Origin for whistle
Old English hwistlian, from Proto-Germanic *khwis-, of imitative origin. Used also in Middle English of the hissing of serpents. Related: Whistled; whistling. To whistle for (with small prospect of getting) is probably from nautical whistling for a wind. To whistle "Dixie" is from 1940.
"tubular musical instrument," Old English hwistle (see whistle (v.)). To wet one's whistle "take a drink" (late 14c.) originally may have referred to pipes, or be an allusion to the throat as a sort of pipe. Phrase clean as a whistle is recorded from 1878. Railroad whistle stop (at which trains stop only if the engineer hears a signal from the station) is recorded from 1934.
In addition to the idioms beginning with whistle
- whistle Dixie
- whistle for
- whistle in the dark
- blow the whistle on
- clean as a whistle
- slick as a whistle
- wet one's whistle