coddle

verb cod·dle \ ˈkä-dᵊl \
Updated on: 10 Dec 2017

Definition of coddle

coddled; coddling play \ˈkäd-liŋ, ˈkä-dᵊl-iŋ\
transitive verb
1 : to cook (something, such as eggs) in liquid slowly and gently just below the boiling point
  • coddled the eggs for the Caesar salad
2 : to treat with extreme or excessive care or kindness : pamper
  • accused the court of coddling criminals
  • colleges that coddle their athletes

coddler

play \ˈkäd-lər, ˈkä-dᵊl-ər\ noun

Examples of coddle in a Sentence

  1. The judges were accused of coddling criminals.

  2. a hearty, traditional breakfast that included coddled eggs

Recent Examples of coddle from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'coddle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Origin and Etymology of coddle

perhaps altered from caudle "to administer a caudle to," verbal derivative of caudle
Note: The meaning "to pamper," earlier "to treat as if in need of nursing," attested from the second half of the 18th century, cannot be related with certainty to the cooking sense and may be of distinct origin.


CODDLE Defined for English Language Learners

coddle

verb

Definition of coddle for English Language Learners

  • : to treat (someone) with too much care or kindness


CODDLE Defined for Kids

coddle

verb cod·dle \ ˈkä-dᵊl \

Definition of coddle for Students

coddled; coddling
: to treat with too much care : pamper


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up coddle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!

WORD OF THE DAY

of, relating to, or being an oracle

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Intact Latin Quiz

  • roman-tablet
  • What did focus mean in Latin?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!