rad·​dled | \ ˈra-dᵊld How to pronounce raddled (audio) \

Definition of raddled

1 : being in a state of confusion : lacking composure

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How raddled came to mean "old and worn" isn't known for sure, but etymologists have some theories. One possibility is an association with raddle, a red coloring matter that was used to mark animals. From this, raddled came to mean "heavily made up with rouge" - a condition that sometimes causes the makeup wearer to appear older and more haggard instead of more attractive. Raddled predates the similar-sounding adjective rattled, which means "confused or upset" and comes from the verb rattle. Raddled first appeared in print in 1694, and rattled didn't appear until the early 1900s.

Examples of raddled in a Sentence

trying to explain a mix-up in my mail order to a clearly raddled clerk in customer service

First Known Use of raddled

1694, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for raddled

of obscure origin

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The first known use of raddled was in 1694

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Cite this Entry

“Raddled.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/raddled. Accessed 18 Apr. 2021.

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