prickle

noun
prick·le | \ ˈpri-kəl \

Definition of prickle 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a fine sharp process or projection especially : a sharp pointed emergence arising from the epidermis or cortex (see cortex sense 3a) of a plant (such as a rose or raspberry) — compare spine, thorn

2 : a prickling or tingling sensation

prickle

verb
prickled; prickling\ˈpri-k(ə-)liŋ \

Definition of prickle (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to prick slightly

2 : to produce prickles in

intransitive verb

: to cause or feel a prickling, tingling, or stinging sensation

Examples of prickle in a Sentence

Noun

She felt a prickle of fear as the stranger came closer to her. He felt the familiar prickle of excitement as the game began.

Verb

The burrs were prickling my arm. The wool sweater prickled my skin. My skin prickled with fear. The hair prickled on the back of my neck. She felt a prickling sensation in her shoulder.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

House Republicans in particular prickle at the notion of approving Obamacare subsidies. Amber Phillips, Washington Post, "Why a bipartisan deal to prop up Obamacare may be over before it has begun," 18 Oct. 2017 Steel, wire and splintered wood prickle from broken buildings in fantastic shapes: spikes, ruffles, fanfolds of tin and aluminum. By Michael Browning, miamiherald, "A desolated landscape: the toll of Hurricane Andrew," 25 Aug. 2015 Suddenly every sound and motion made my skin prickle and pulse. Bassey Ikpi, The Root, "Anxiety Is All in Your Head," 4 July 2017 But Nixon's men grew up in a denser geography of ethnic difference, full of prickles and thorns. Sam Tanenhaus, Esquire, "When Pat Buchanan Tried To Make America Great Again," 5 Apr. 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The novels are prickled like a sea urchin with the spines and fuzz of many indecencies. New York Times, "Philip Roth, a Born Spellbinder and Peerless Chronicler of Sex and Death," 23 May 2018 Needles of terror prickled at the edges of the fairy-tale day in a post-Brexit kingdom. Caity Weaver, New York Times, "I Also Went to the Royal Wedding," 24 May 2018 The laser felt like tiny needles quickly prickling my skin and was somewhat uncomfortable, but not exactly painful. Sadé Carpenter, RedEye Chicago, "Time for R&R: 6 ways to relax and unwind in and near Chicago," 3 Apr. 2018 My skin prickled with little tugs, like stitches being ripped out. Alison Kinney, Longreads, "The Man in the Mirror," 10 Mar. 2018 Last night, temperatures were so low the wind prickled like a cactus, but a lucky few were offered respite inside the Marlo Laz launch dinner. Lilah Ramzi, Vogue, "Marlo Laz Launches the Desert Rising Jewelry Collection With a Southwestern Soiree," 2 Feb. 2018 African species – a favorite food of giraffes – form menacing thorns while the Australian wattles are much friendlier (and prickle free). Debbie Arrington, sacbee, "This sure sign of (almost) spring offers drought relief, too," 16 Feb. 2018 Photos of Atlanta strippers picking up singles on their hands and knees prickle with shame that these women have few other economic opportunities. Jason Farago, New York Times, "Lauren Greenfield Tries to Capture the Meaning of Money," 17 Oct. 2017 But the sense most people notice first is smell—the scent of old books prickling your nose. Erin Blakemore, Smithsonian, "The Quest to Better Describe the Scent of Old Books," 7 Apr. 2017

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

circa 1522, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for prickle

Noun

Middle English prikle, from Old English pricle; akin to Old English prica prick

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Time Traveler for prickle

The first known use of prickle was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for prickle

prickle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of prickle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: one of usually many stiff, sharp points that grow on some plants

: a slight, sharp feeling of an emotion

prickle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of prickle (Entry 2 of 2)

: to cause or experience an unpleasant feeling that is like the feeling of having many small, sharp points against your skin

prickle

noun
prick·le | \ ˈpri-kəl \

Kids Definition of prickle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a small sharp point (as a thorn)

2 : a slight stinging pain

prickle

verb
prickled; prickling

Kids Definition of prickle (Entry 2 of 2)

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Comments on prickle

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