cud·​dle | \ ˈkə-dᵊl \
cuddled; cuddling\ ˈkəd-​liŋ , 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 , 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

In this sweet snap shared on Instagram, her youngest child is seen wearing Christmas pajamas while cuddling with his big sister Ella. Jessica Leigh Mattern, Country Living, "Copy Joanna Gaines and Get Baby Crew's Christmas Pajamas for Your Whole Family," 1 Dec. 2018 On a recent Tuesday afternoon at Mr. Ji’s cafe in the Hongdae neighborhood—ground zero for Seoul’s animal cafes—a meerkat cuddled with a leopard tortoise. Dasl Yoon, WSJ, "That Raccoon Rooting Through Your Trash Could Be a Big Star in Seoul," 7 Nov. 2018 Kim Kardashian West kicked off the weekend cuddling with her three kids. Dave Quinn,, "Family Cuddle Time! Kim Kardashian West Shares Adorable Snuggles in Bed with Her 3 Kids," 9 June 2018 Why not complete your experiment and cuddle up with your kids and watch Daniel Craig be tortured in a very private area? Judge John Hodgman, New York Times, "Judge John Hodgman on Children Watching James Bond Movies," 3 May 2018 The two have also interviewed Ke$ha, who talked about her new reality show while cuddling with a kitten— a move inspired by her Seventeen cover shoot! Alison Bernicker, Seventeen, "Nikki and Sara Live," 13 Feb. 2013 Dodger — who loves to cuddle and sit in laps — went through several adoptions that didn’t work out, the most recent being a month ago, before the Fraustos spotted the dog on TV, making this reunion even more miraculous. Kelli Bender,, "Dog Missing Two Years Reunites with Family After Pet Parents Spot Him on TV Adoption Segment," 6 July 2018 The pooch wakes up from his scary dream and is happy to cuddle with his fluffy friend. Kelly Potts, Woman's Day, "This Dog Comforting Her Buddy During a Nightmare Is THE Sweetest Thing," 9 Dec. 2014 Guests can cuddle with the pup in guest reception throughout the duration of their stay. Michaela Bechler, Vogue, "17 Hotels Around the World With Pets in Residence," 25 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Not only will Indy be providing students with plenty of cuddles and slobbery kisses, but the pup could be an imperative part of keeping students happy and healthy this year. Mckenzie Schwark, Teen Vogue, "Therapy Animals Are on Some College Campuses for Back-to-School Season," 29 Aug. 2018 According to the rules established by cuddle parties and cuddling websites, nothing happens that both people don’t verbally agree to in advance. Tara Bahrampour, Washington Post, "I went to get hugged by a professional cuddler. Here’s how it felt.," 24 Apr. 2018 Adult male gorillas consistently groom and even cuddle with little ones. Alison Gopnik, WSJ, "For Gorillas, Being a Good Dad Is Sexy," 30 Nov. 2018 There’s the unconditional love, the furry cuddles, the companionship. Chavie Lieber, Vox, "How to make your dog Instagram-famous, according to an agent for “pet influencers”," 6 Nov. 2018 In a video clip of the gorgeous moment, the young royal fan cuddles Prince Harry, before stepping back to admire the Duke's beard. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kids Can't Get Enough of Prince Harry's Beard on the Royal Tour in Australia," 17 Oct. 2018 Take it up with the designers at Aseptic Studio, who created a headless torso pillow to be your favorite cuddle buddy. Liz Stinson, Curbed, "Headless ergonomic body pillows: comforting or totally creepy?," 11 Oct. 2018 Sporty blanket This gift comes with everything your man loves: sports and cuddles with you. Kelsey Stiegman, Seventeen, "24 Out-of-the-Box Birthday Gifts Your Boyfriend Will Love," 4 June 2018 Some one-on-one cuddlers also host cuddle parties where strangers come together for a communal hug. The Washington Post,, "Some people are paying for cuddles. And it's not what you might think.," 20 Apr. 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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Dictionary Entries near cuddle








Statistics for cuddle

Last Updated

27 Dec 2018

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 \
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

Comments on cuddle

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a complex dispute or argument

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