squabble

noun
squab·​ble | \ ˈskwä-bəl How to pronounce squabble (audio) \

Definition of squabble

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a noisy altercation or quarrel usually over petty matters

squabble

verb
squabbled; squabbling\ ˈskwä-​b(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce squabbling (audio) \

Definition of squabble (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to quarrel noisily and usually over petty matters

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Other Words from squabble

Verb

squabbler \ ˈskwä-​b(ə-​)lər How to pronounce squabbler (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for squabble

Noun

quarrel, wrangle, altercation, squabble mean a noisy dispute usually marked by anger. quarrel implies heated verbal contention, stressing strained or severed relations which may persist beyond the contention. a quarrel nearly destroyed the relationship wrangle suggests undignified and often futile disputation with a noisy insistence on differing opinions. wrangle interminably about small issues altercation implies fighting with words as the chief weapon, although it may also connote blows. a loud public altercation squabble stresses childish and unseemly dispute over petty matters, but it need not imply bitterness or anger. a brief squabble over what to do next

Examples of squabble in a Sentence

Noun

frightened by noise of the squabble, the cat hid under the couch

Verb

The children were squabbling over the toys. the children squabbled loudly over who got to play with the toy first
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

That includes policies that drag out rebuilding and legal squabbles between landowners and officials tasked with charting recovery. Washington Post, "Mobile home dwellers left behind after 2013 Colorado floods," 17 Sep. 2019 As a result, cybercriminals profit by infiltrating dozens of businesses or public agencies with a single attack, while the beleaguered MSPs and their incapacitated clients squabble over who should pay the ransom or recovery costs. Renee Dudley, ProPublica, "The New Target That Enables Ransomware Hackers to Paralyze Dozens of Towns and Businesses at Once," 12 Sep. 2019 His advisers are in a running squabble with the media over the coverage the candidate has received. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "Can Joe Biden Remind Democrats What They Saw in Him?," 12 Sep. 2019 Within 30 minutes, a squabble ensued between two would-be tenants, a bluebird and tree swallow. Mike Klingaman, baltimoresun.com, "Harford youngsters’ interest in birding is piqued through programs in the county," 20 Aug. 2019 The development comes amid a squabble between Iran and Trump administration over claims that the U.S. had shot down an Iranian drone, also in the strait. Nicholas Wu, USA TODAY, "Iran's Revolutionary Guard says its forces seized British tanker," 19 July 2019 So began a squabble over where Mugabe would be buried. The Economist, "A sad, tawdry end for Robert Mugabe," 15 Sep. 2019 The Broncos’ third Lombardi Trophy has been followed by mediocrity (9-7 in 2016), irrelevance (5-11 and 6-10 in 2017-18), coaching and quarterback turnover and headlines about stadium naming rights and Bowlen family squabbles. Ryan O’halloran, The Denver Post, "State of the Broncos: Expectations low, but confidence high entering regular season," 8 Sep. 2019 This, too, is backwards: The circumstances of the era in which art is produced, with all of the squabbles and obsessions of the moment, fall away. Kyle Smith, National Review, "Now Renoir Is Problematic," 27 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The acrimony over Brexit, which has reached fever pitch as deadlines come and go while politicians squabble, is affecting the mental wellbeing of people from Belfast to Brighton. Danica Kirka, The Seattle Times, "Brexhaustion: Long, grinding Brexit is stressing people out," 12 Apr. 2019 As part of the same process of pacification, Japanese intelligence was shrunk, divided into squabbling units and focused narrowly on communists at home and trade secrets abroad. The Economist, "Japanese spies, once renowned, have fallen on hard times," 14 Sep. 2019 Willis and the exiled group members have squabbled publicly over rights to the Village People name. Allison Stewart, chicagotribune.com, "The Village People wars have ended, and Victor Willis is back, doing the policeman thing at Riot Fest," 12 Sep. 2019 As an illustration of the behind-the-scenes squabbling Saturday, one administration official said the Pentagon thwarted agreed-upon plans in Iran by using backchannels to provide Mr. Trump with inaccurate estimates of casualties. Gordon Lubold, WSJ, "Trump Bucked National-Security Aides on Proposed Iran Attack," 23 June 2019 In various forms, the dispute had been playing out until recently in a local probate court before judges accustomed to squabbling over inheritances. Eriq Gardner, The Hollywood Reporter, "Deaths in Entertainment Become Problems for the Federal Judiciary," 22 Aug. 2019 Age already a punching bag Biden and Trump, who turns 73 on Friday, have already squabbled about age in the early going of the campaign. Michael Collins, USA TODAY, "Trump vs. Biden in Iowa: Septuagenarian rivals try to demonstrate vigor in head-to-head stops," 17 Apr. 2019 For six months, no government was formed, as the two camps squabbled over who would get which ministries. The Economist, "How do you reform a country where gunmen torch Ebola clinics?," 2 Aug. 2019 But those who do might take notice, and stop squabbling about the finer points. Dana Milbank, The Mercury News, "Milbank: Williamson won’t win, but to all 2020 hopefuls: Take note," 31 July 2019

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

Noun

1602, in the meaning defined above

Verb

1604, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for squabble

Noun

probably of Scandinavian origin; akin to Swedish dialect skvabbel dispute

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Statistics for squabble

Last Updated

14 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for squabble

The first known use of squabble was in 1602

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More Definitions for squabble

squabble

verb

English Language Learners Definition of squabble

: to argue loudly about things that are not important

squabble

noun
squab·​ble | \ ˈskwä-bəl How to pronounce squabble (audio) \

Kids Definition of squabble

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a noisy quarrel usually over something unimportant

squabble

verb
squabbled; squabbling

Kids Definition of squabble (Entry 2 of 2)

: to quarrel noisily for little or no reason

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More from Merriam-Webster on squabble

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with squabble

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for squabble

Spanish Central: Translation of squabble

Nglish: Translation of squabble for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of squabble for Arabic Speakers

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