winkle

[wing-kuh l]British
verb (used with object), win·kled, win·kling.
  1. Informal. to pry (something) out of a place, as winkle meat is dug out of its shell with a pin (usually followed by out).

Origin of winkle

First recorded in 1575–85; short for periwinkle1
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for winkle

Historical Examples of winkle


British Dictionary definitions for winkle

winkle

noun
  1. See periwinkle 1
verb
  1. (tr; usually foll by out, out of, etc) informal, mainly British to extract or prise out

Word Origin for winkle

C16: shortened from periwinkle 1
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 winkle
n.

edible mollusk, 1580s, shortening of periwinkle (n.2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper