cud·​dle | \ ˈkə-dᵊl How to pronounce cuddle (audio) \
cuddled; cuddling\ ˈkəd-​liŋ How to pronounce cuddling (audio) , ˈkə-​dᵊl-​iŋ \

Definition of cuddle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

: to hold close for warmth or comfort or in affection He cuddled the puppy.

intransitive verb

: to lie close or snug : nestle, snuggle … dewy glens where couples cuddle on blankets …— Bob Sipchen



Definition of cuddle (Entry 2 of 2)

: a close embrace

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Other Words from cuddle


cuddler \ ˈkəd-​lər How to pronounce cuddler (audio) , ˈkə-​dᵊl-​ər \ noun

Synonyms for cuddle

Synonyms: Verb

nestle, nuzzle, snoozle [chiefly dialect], snuggle

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Examples of cuddle in a Sentence


Let's cuddle by the fire. kittens cuddling in a basket

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The magical invention made little nugget shaped ice with a divot in the center to cuddle our beverages. Leslie Anne Tarabella,, "An icy lesson of contentment," 18 June 2019 The text accompanied a photo of Cataldo, a rosy-cheeked woman with a neat brown bob, cuddling with her amiable-looking bald husband. Nathan Heller, The New Yorker, "The Perverse Logic of GoFundMe Health Care," 24 June 2019 Friends chatted over food and beers while couples cuddled, napped or watched movies on their laptops. Eun-young Jeong, WSJ, "Newest Camping Adventure: During the Day and in the City," 18 June 2019 Kelty Bestie Blanket Bring two warm, washable, packable puffy blankets: one for cuddling when the temperature drops, and a spare in case of airsickness. Wirecutter Staff, New York Times, "Flying With Children? We Have the Gear You Need," 15 June 2019 In the maternity room later, the young mother — just a child herself — was cuddling her dead baby, Rose. Tim Prudente,, "Speaking for baby Rose: How a Baltimore detective found his purpose investigating child abuse," 6 June 2019 The clips show the couple on a boat, cuddling in bed, and Turner playing the guitar. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Joe Jonas Shares Sweet Personal Footage with Sophie Turner in the Jonas Brothers Documentary," 4 June 2019 While at the ball, Shawn and Hailey cuddled for photo ops, and Shawn helped fix Hailey's dress train. Claire Dodson, Teen Vogue, "Shawn Mendes Attended Met Gala 2019 Without a Date One Year After Going With Hailey Bieber," 6 May 2019 Just cuddle up within each other's hair and vogue, hunny. Seventeen, "The 13 Types of Selfies That Are All Over Instagram," 11 Jan. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Three beagles were trained to identify the cancer Dogs are already the perfect cuddle buddy, fetch partner and best friend, but a few good pups can add another line to their resume — cancer detectors. Julie Mazziotta,, "Researchers Successfully Train Dogs to Sniff Out Lung Cancer with 97 Percent Accuracy," 18 June 2019 But this perhaps explains why Sunstein seems oblivious to this political moment as one requiring from government not light touches and cuddles but a major kick up society’s collective ass. Aaron Timms, The New Republic, "The Sameness of Cass Sunstein," 20 June 2019 Alex cuddles Sky Bear through doctor visits, squeezes him during shots. Amy Chillag, CNN, "This little girl noticed that some hospitalized kids didn't have stuffed animals. So, she did something about it," 11 June 2019 Workers can stroke, cuddle and ooh and ah over the adorableness, all while lowering blood pressure without the use of medication. Joan Morris, The Mercury News, "To ease stress, take two puppies and call us in the morning," 7 June 2019 Consider turning the first two days into official cuddle time. Beth Shapouri, Glamour, "10 Things You Should Never Do After a Bikini Wax," 18 Apr. 2019 Mia is known for stealing the show — getting cuddles and kisses from Zara’s cousin Prince Harry at polo events and happily displaying great-grandmother Queen Elizabeth’s purse during official photo shoots. Erin Hill,, "The Queen's Granddaughter Zara Tindall Welcomes Second Child After Suffering Miscarriage," 19 June 2018 Judith Newman wrote in The New York Times in February 2017 that the political morass following the 2016 presidential election explained why Americans had latched onto hygge—or cuddle puddles with snacks and good lighting. Laura Norkin, Glamour, "‘Päntsdrunk’ Is the Scandinavian Wellness Trend We Need Right Now," 29 May 2018 When the weather drops below 60 degrees, there are a few ~fall~ rights of passage every self-identifying basic must take part in: Taking an Instagram picture surrounded by autumn leaves. Tweeting about cuddle and/or sweater weather. Lillian Chen, Seventeen, "8 Super Cute Fall Hair Color Trends That Will Make You Crave a PSL," 23 July 2018

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

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First Known Use of cuddle


1520, in the meaning defined at transitive sense


1825, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cuddle

Verb and Noun

origin unknown

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Statistics for cuddle

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cuddle

The first known use of cuddle was in 1520

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More Definitions for cuddle



English Language Learners Definition of cuddle

: to hold (someone or something) in your arms in order to show affection
: to lie or sit close together


cud·​dle | \ ˈkə-dᵊl How to pronounce cuddle (audio) \
cuddled; cuddling

Kids Definition of cuddle

1 : to hold close for warmth or comfort or in affection
2 : to lie close : nestle, snuggle

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More from Merriam-Webster on cuddle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cuddle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cuddle

Spanish Central: Translation of cuddle

Nglish: Translation of cuddle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cuddle for Arabic Speakers

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