swad·​dle | \ ˈswä-dᵊl How to pronounce swaddle (audio) \
swaddled; swaddling\ ˈswäd-​liŋ How to pronounce swaddling (audio) , ˈswä-​dᵊl-​iŋ \

Definition of swaddle

transitive verb

1a : to wrap (an infant) with swaddling clothes
b : envelop, swathe legs swaddled in bandages
2 : restrain, restrict marriage … swaddled him in a domesticity he came to loathe— Nina Auerbach

Examples of swaddle in a Sentence

He swaddled the baby in a blanket.
Recent Examples on the Web New mom Meghan's outfit in the photos was stunning, per usual, but baby Sussex also looked darling snuggly swaddled in their mother's arms. Roxanne Adamiyatt, Town & Country, "What Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's Baby Wore for His Debut," 8 May 2019 Tyler was barely born, a sack of warm flour and red skin swaddled in blankets on our couch. Brianna Randall, chicagotribune.com, "When postpartum depression stole my husband," 12 Sep. 2019 Every mom on social media seemed to have these perfect cherubic newborns swaddled in lace who slept all the time. Aili Nahas, PEOPLE.com, "Author Leslie Bruce Wants Moms to Be Easy On Themselves: 'Motherhood Only Looks Easy On Instagram!'," 11 Sep. 2019 Pampers, a company known for swaddling newborns and toddlers in disposable diapers, is entering the baby monitoring world with its first all-in-one connected care system. Rebekah Tuchscherer, USA TODAY, "Lumi by Pampers combines parental insight with data to establish routine for baby," 18 July 2019 Soaring 710 feet and anchored in Navajo sandstone, the dam was conceived in desert thirst, born into controversy, and swaddled in argument. John D'anna, azcentral, "For a while in 1983, sheets of plywood were all that kept the mighty Glen Canyon Dam from overflowing," 18 July 2019 Growing up, we were swaddled in metaphorical bubble wrap, never allowed to stray far in order to keep the world at bay. Laura Delarato, Condé Nast Traveler, "Learning to Drive at 32 Turned Me Into the Traveler I've Always Wanted to Be," 22 Aug. 2019 One reader had success swaddling his plants in aluminum foil. Joan Morris, The Mercury News, "Are there non-lethal ways of controlling Bay Area’s rat population?," 9 Aug. 2019 She was swaddled in two blankets wrapped up to her neck. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al, "11-month-old Selma girl suffered broken leg, arm, spine and brain trauma; father jailed on $1M bond," 4 Sep. 2019

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

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

History and Etymology for swaddle

Middle English swadelen, swathelen, probably alteration of swedelen, swethelen, from swethel swaddling band, from Old English; akin to Old English swathian to swathe

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Time Traveler for swaddle

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for swaddle

Last Updated

3 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Swaddle.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/swaddles. Accessed 13 December 2019.

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More Definitions for swaddle


How to pronounce swaddle (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of swaddle

: to wrap (someone, especially a baby) tightly with a blanket, pieces of cloth, etc.

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More from Merriam-Webster on swaddle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for swaddle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with swaddle

Spanish Central: Translation of swaddle

Nglish: Translation of swaddle for Spanish Speakers

Comments on swaddle

What made you want to look up swaddle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


easily led, controlled, or managed

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