meddle

verb
med·​dle | \ ˈme-dᵊl How to pronounce meddle (audio) \
meddled; meddling\ ˈmed-​liŋ , ˈme-​dᵊl-​iŋ How to pronounce meddling (audio) \

Definition of meddle

intransitive verb

: to interest oneself in what is not one's concern : interfere without right or propriety (see propriety sense 1) I never meddle in other people's private affairs— G. B. Shaw

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Other Words from meddle

meddler \ ˈmed-​lər How to pronounce meddler (audio) , ˈme-​dᵊl-​ər How to pronounce meddler (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for meddle

meddle, interfere, and tamper mean to get involved with something that is someone else's business. meddle is used for intruding in an inconsiderate and annoying fashion. Don't meddle in her personal life. interfere is used for getting in the way of or disturbing someone or something whether intentionally or not. I tried to give advice without interfering. tamper is used for intruding or experimenting in a way that is wrong or uncalled-for and likely to be harmful. Someone had tampered with the lock.

Examples of meddle in a Sentence

please stop meddling in your sister's marriage, even though you mean well

Recent Examples on the Web

Iran’s leaders are suspicious of Russia’s upgraded relationships with Israel and Saudi Arabia; many Iranians are wary of depending on a regime that, like the U.S., has so often meddled in its affairs. Angela Stent, WSJ, "Vladimir Putin’s Big Push Into the Middle East," 15 Feb. 2019 The new election date also could force Mr. Mandelblit to wait until after the vote, for fear that an announcement too close to the election would be seen as meddling in the democratic process. Dov Lieber, WSJ, "Netanyahu Bets on Security, Foreign Policy to Win Snap Israeli Election, but Victory No Sure Thing," 25 Dec. 2018 Nominally, Parker and Stone are libertarians, professing a straight-down-the-middle empathy for the little guy who just wants to be left alone by meddling political and cultural forces. Todd Vanderwerff, Vox, "Alt-right internet mobs are attacking celebrities with their own jokes. The irony is stark.," 27 July 2018 Its government attempted to meddle in our elections and is planning on doing so again in this year. Jonah Goldberg, National Review, "American Nationalists Are Awfully Quiet about Russia," 16 Feb. 2018 If a rogue scientist tinkering quietly in a lab can smash through norms, local laws, and meddle with the human genome to feed his own ego or scientific curiosity, the worry is that many more dangerous applications of CRISPR could be in store. Julia Belluz, Vox, "Is the CRISPR baby controversy the start of a terrifying new chapter in gene editing?," 22 Jan. 2019 Even as Volkswagen works on enterprisewide compliance systems, a code of conduct and various technical changes to guard against another scandal, German prosecutors have asserted that some company officials were meddling with their investigation. William Boston, WSJ, "Report on Volkswagen’s Changes Since Emissions Scandal Cites Lack of Transparency," 27 Aug. 2018 The earth’s changing climate contributed to the increase, meddling with precipitation patterns and hastening suppressing wildfires—which creates a buildup of natural fuels. Kevin Dupzyk, Popular Mechanics, "The Tank That's Tougher Than Wildfire," 13 Nov. 2018 Was that due to hackers meddling with the vote, technical snafus, or user error? Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Blockchain-based elections would be a disaster for democracy," 6 Nov. 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for meddle

Middle English medlen, from Anglo-French mesler, medler, from Vulgar Latin *misculare, from Latin miscēre to mix — more at mix

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Statistics for meddle

Last Updated

23 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for meddle

The first known use of meddle was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for meddle

meddle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of meddle

: to become involved in the activities and concerns of other people when your involvement is not wanted
: to change or handle something in a way that is unwanted or harmful

meddle

verb
med·​dle | \ ˈme-dᵊl How to pronounce meddle (audio) \
meddled; meddling

Kids Definition of meddle

: to be overly involved in someone else's business

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More from Merriam-Webster on meddle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with meddle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for meddle

Spanish Central: Translation of meddle

Nglish: Translation of meddle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of meddle for Arabic Speakers

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