verb (used without object), whis·tled, whis·tling.
verb (used with object), whis·tled, whis·tling.
- 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
Related Words for whistleblare, hiss, sound, signal, whine, warble, pipe, toot, whiz, wheeze, blast, shriek, fife, trill, tootle, flute, skirl
Examples from the Web for whistle
Contemporary Examples of whistle
“Clean as a whistle,” says a senior investigator involved in the case.Exclusive: Inside a Cop-Killer’s Final Hours
December 31, 2014
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.Pyongyang Primer: Kenneth Bae Comes Home
November 15, 2014
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
September 26, 2014
Not a lot of air tooting that whistle, no matter what the video would lead viewers to believe.Anti-Vaxxers Have a New Hero
September 1, 2014
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
June 12, 2014
Historical Examples of whistle
He was still exerting his strength to the utmost when the whistle of the locomotive was heard.Brave and Bold
Let me but have the little wench and the whistle to-morrow morn, and it is done.The Armourer's Prentices
Charlotte M. Yonge
Do, some kind Christian, pump a stroke or two, just to wet my whistle.A Rill from the Town Pump (From "Twice Told Tales")
The whistle sounds, punctually to the stroke of six; we are off.The Roof of France
"Whistle when you are ready, Donald," called Linda as she turned away.Her Father's Daughter
- 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