dabble

verb
dab·​ble | \ ˈda-bəl How to pronounce dabble (audio) \
dabbled; dabbling\ ˈda-​b(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce dabbling (audio) \

Definition of dabble

transitive verb

: to wet by splashing or by little dips or strokes : spatter

intransitive verb

1a : to paddle, splash, or play in or as if in water
b : to reach with the bill to the bottom of shallow water in order to obtain food
2 : to work or involve oneself superficially or intermittently especially in a secondary activity or interest dabbles in art

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Examples of dabble in a Sentence

The ducks dabbled in the stream. She sat by the pool, dabbling her feet in the cool water.

Recent Examples on the Web

All sorts of rock stars have dabbled in the visual arts, from John Lennon, with drawing, to Patti Smith, with photographs. Mark Feeney, BostonGlobe.com, "Guitars, stars, and attitude," 11 July 2019 In 2018 alone, Foxsister added a fixed-price menu, started dabbling in Italian fare and incorporated a brunch pop-up on the weekends called Benedict. Justin Phillips, SFChronicle.com, "Foxsister to close and become Italian-focused Great Gold," 5 July 2019 More Stories For A Bath Full of Ecstasy, the band’s seventh album, the members dabbled with new means of straightforwardness. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, "Hot Chip Hones the Meaning of ‘Ecstasy’," 25 June 2019 Marvel has already been dabbling with video game adaptations of its films. Shannon Liao, CNN, "Marvel's Avengers are finally Hulk-smashing into video games," 11 June 2019 This isn't the first time that Chopra has dabbled with highlights, either. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Priyanka Chopra's 10 Year Challenge Features a Major Hair Transformation," 19 Jan. 2019 During the Cold War there were allegations that the Soviet Union was dabbling in psychic research as a means of espionage or warfare, but there is no evidence any of the research actually uncovered anything useful. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "Journal Claims Russian Troops Have Psychic Powers," 4 Apr. 2019 Some North Texas apartment community owners already are dabbling in the short-term stay sector with units up for grab on websites including Airbnb and Vrbo. Steve Brown, Dallas News, "Your Dallas apartment high-rise might become a pop-up hotel," 6 June 2019 Martin Rogers has been regularly trading options from his mobile phone since last summer, after dabbling in stocks and derivatives for years. Gunjan Banerji, WSJ, "The Day Traders Are Back, Now Playing With Options," 11 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dabble.' 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 dabble

1557, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for dabble

perhaps frequentative of dab entry 2

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Dictionary Entries near dabble

D/A

dab

DAB

dabble

dabbler

dabbling

dabblingly

Statistics for dabble

Last Updated

14 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dabble

The first known use of dabble was in 1557

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More Definitions for dabble

dabble

verb

English Language Learners Definition of dabble

: to take part in an activity in a way that is not serious
: to play or move around in water

dabble

verb
dab·​ble | \ ˈda-bəl How to pronounce dabble (audio) \
dabbled; dabbling

Kids Definition of dabble

1 : to wet by splashing : spatter
2 : to paddle or play in or as if in water Ducks dabbled in the pond.
3 : to work without any deep involvement I just dabble with art.

Other Words from dabble

dabbler \ ˈda-​blər \ noun

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More from Merriam-Webster on dabble

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with dabble

Spanish Central: Translation of dabble

Nglish: Translation of dabble for Spanish Speakers

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