sprinkle

verb
sprin·kle | \ˈspriŋ-kəl \
sprinkled; sprinkling\ˈspriŋ-k(ə-)liŋ \

Definition of sprinkle 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to scatter in drops or particles

2a : to scatter over

b : to scatter at intervals in or among : dot sprinkled the speech with quips

c : to wet lightly

intransitive verb

1 : to scatter a liquid in fine drops

2 : to rain lightly in scattered drops

sprinkle

noun

Definition of sprinkle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act or an instance of sprinkling especially : a light rain

3 sprinkles plural : small particles of candy used as a topping (as on ice cream) : jimmies

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Other Words from sprinkle

Verb

sprinkler \ˈspriŋ-k(ə-)lər \ noun

Examples of sprinkle in a Sentence

Verb

He sprinkled water on the plants. I sprinkled grass seed over the soil. She sprinkled the clothes before ironing them. “Is it raining?” “It's just sprinkling a little.”

Noun

It rained last night, but it was just a sprinkle. She topped the pasta with a sprinkle of parsley.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Buy a single scoop in a cup or sugar cone for $2, plus get sprinkles for free. Bailey Loosemore, The Courier-Journal, "Celebrate National Ice Cream Day with deals at these Louisville shops," 13 July 2018 Unicorn Marshmallow Cones: Cotton candy marshmallow is piped into a cone dipped in white chocolate and coated with sprinkles, then topped with more white chocolate, sprinkles and a striped straw. Kellie Hwang, azcentral, "6 places for over-the-top, Instagram-worthy unicorn treats in Phoenix," 11 July 2018 At freewheeling town-hall meetings, O’Rourke espouses gun control, single-payer health care, and other progressive positions, sprinkling his speeches with folksy anecdotes and occasional profanity. Andrew Rice, Daily Intelligencer, "Can a Democrat Ever Win in Texas?," 10 July 2018 Squeeze a few drops of lemon juice over shrimp and sprinkle just a hint of chile powder all over. Jonah Miller, WSJ, "Throw a Summer Party the Effortless Spanish Way," 6 July 2018 Rub a little of the oil on the chicken breasts, sprinkle them with 1 teaspoon salt, and fit them into the pot. Leah Eskin, chicagotribune.com, "How to dry-braise chicken and banish badly poached bouncy meat," 27 June 2018 Since diatomaceous earth needs to be dry, wait until the seeds are starting to germinate, then sprinkle it on the area of concern. OregonLive.com, "How to clear soil choked with old roots: Ask an expert," 6 June 2018 After eating lunch separately, Kim and Moon will plant a pine tree together using a mix of soil from Mount Paektu in the North and Mount Hallasan in the South, sprinkling it with water from the rivers that run through Pyongyang and Seoul. Anna Fifield, Washington Post, "The historic summit of the Koreas hangs on the North’s nuclear intentions," 26 Apr. 2018 For a fast way to include flax in your diet, try adding a tablespoon of ground flaxseed to your morning cereal or smoothie, or sprinkle it on top of yogurt. Lisa Drayer, CNN, "Foods that can suppress appetite, aid weight loss," 8 Mar. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Instead of that in-your-face, pink-and-purple swirled Unicorn, Crystal Ball is mostly a soft white color, with few streaks of turquoise and topped with some vibrant, multicolored candy sprinkles. Carol Motsinger, Cincinnati.com, "Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino has a new, far-out little sis. It's a creamy Bohemian dream.," 20 Mar. 2018 Caleb goes for the multicolored sprinkles, then adds some mini M&Ms to the mix. Lynn Ischay, cleveland.com, "All City Candy offers hands-on chances for sweet fun (photos)," 11 Feb. 2018 In a staircase that leads to a Manhattan penthouse’s terrace, New York designers Alexandra Pappas and Tatyana Miron delivered a brooding forecast with a sprinkle of whimsy. Tim Gavan, WSJ, "Five Stairways Go From Dull to Dramatic," 13 July 2018 Completed in 1905, the grand residence looks updated to a T, blending original character with a sprinkle of contemporary fixtures. Jenny Xie, Curbed, "Impressive Arts and Crafts house asks $3.35M outside NYC," 9 July 2018 Strain into a rocks glass over fresh ice. Garnish with a sprinkle of celery salt. Lisa Futterman, chicagotribune.com, "James Beard-nominated mezcal book digs deep into history, production controversy," 24 Apr. 2018 Unlike most shrimp shacks, the shrimp is butterflied, flaky-crusted, dusted with a sprinkle of salt and flecked with surprising treasures of black pepper. Michael Nagrant, RedEye Chicago, "A guide to eating your way through Chicago's South Side," 6 July 2017 The Topper The wedding cake was adorned with a six-inch three-dimensional replica of the couple, provided by DOOB 3D. The cake was chocolate with vanilla buttercream and covered in organic rainbow sprinkles. New York Times, "Side by Side and No Finish Line in Sight for Alexi Pappas," 6 July 2018 That’s made by adding chopped lettuce, tomato and fresh or fried onions with a sprinkle of oregano and, if desired, some olive oil and vinegar. Joseph A. Gambardello, Philly.com, "How to make a Philly cheesesteak," 5 July 2018

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1575, in the meaning defined at sense 2

History and Etymology for sprinkle

Verb

Middle English sprenklen, sprinclen; akin to Middle High German spreckel, sprenkel spot

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Statistics for sprinkle

Last Updated

26 Sep 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for sprinkle

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

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More Definitions for sprinkle

sprinkle

verb

English Language Learners Definition of sprinkle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to drop or spread small pieces or amounts of something over something

: to put small drops of liquid on (someone or something)

: to rain lightly

sprinkle

noun

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

: a light rain

: a small amount that is sprinkled on something

sprinkles : tiny candies that are put on top of a sweet food (such as ice cream)

sprinkle

verb
sprin·kle | \ˈspriŋ-kəl \
sprinkled; sprinkling

Kids Definition of sprinkle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to scatter in drops or particles sprinkle water sprinkle sand

2 : to scatter over or in or among Sprinkle the corn with salt.

3 : to rain lightly

Other Words from sprinkle

sprinkler \-klər \ noun

sprinkle

noun

Kids Definition of sprinkle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a light rain

sprinkle

transitive verb
sprin·kle
sprinkled; sprinkling

Legal Definition of sprinkle 

: spray

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Comments on sprinkle

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