dab·ble | \ ˈda-bəl \
dabbled; dabbling\-b(ə-)liŋ \

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

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

Tech powers: Amazon, Google and Facebook have dabbled with smaller sports deals, and each would bring a different potential way to leverage more money out of owning the local rights. Jacob Feldman, SI.com, "Five Potential Buyers for Fox's 22 Regional Sports Networks," 12 July 2018 Rosie Flores Texas favorite has dabbled in multiple genres and toured the world. Joey Guerra, Houston Chronicle, "Concerts in Houston: 30 Seconds to Mars and Rosie Flores," 3 July 2018 Wilson and Brown have already dabbled in the area of agritourism with a store at their first Oldham property, Woodland Farm. Bailey Loosemore, The Courier-Journal, "21c owners hope to save historic horse farm by luring bourbon tourists," 25 June 2018 The children of the rich and famous – at least one future billionaire among them – were spending their spare time dabbling with orgonites, which just happen to have a slightly more fraught history than, say, fidget spinners or terrariums. refinery29.com, "Kylie Jenner, Crystals & Cults: Inside The Mysterious Orgonite Society," 13 July 2018 According to lore, the teen made fashion sketches in books and dabbled in modeling. Vogue, "A Vintage Sale Showcases the Work of the Californian “Couturiere” Marilyn Lewis," 27 June 2018 Last year's The Rise and Fall of the D.O.D.O., co-written with Nicole Gilland, told the tale of a surreal above-top-secret DARPA-like organization dabbling in metaphysics and magic. John Wenz, Popular Mechanics, "How Neal Stephenson Got Book Ideas by Moonlighting at Blue Origin," 19 June 2018 Still, that doesn’t mean Macpherson hasn’t dabbled in certain procedures. Stephanie Nolasco, Fox News, "Elle Macpherson says she has never gotten plastic surgery to maintain 'The Body'," 13 June 2018 Husband-and-wife chef duo Lyz Otero and Gerson Velasquez had just begun dabbling with the idea of their own Latin food business in 2015. Nikki Delamotte, cleveland.com, "Cleveland's Half Moon Bakery goes big with empanadas and sweet Latin treats," 9 Feb. 2018

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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Statistics for dabble

Last Updated

8 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for dabble

The first known use of dabble was in 1557

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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


dab·ble | \ ˈda-bəl \
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

See words that rhyme with dabble

Spanish Central: Translation of dabble

Nglish: Translation of dabble for Spanish Speakers

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