tri·​fling | \ ˈtrī-f(ə-)liŋ How to pronounce trifling (audio) \

Definition of trifling

: lacking in significance or solid worth: such as
a : frivolous trifling talk
b : trivial a trifling gift
c chiefly dialectal : lazy, shiftless a trifling fellow

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Examples of trifling in a Sentence

a trifling sum of money deciding what you want to do for a living is no trifling matter
Recent Examples on the Web Bonus: these tweets are usually about the most trifling and hilarious pop culture moments, so ... win win! Danielle Young, The Root, "Watch: Judge of Characters, The Root’s New Digital Show About the Best (and Messiest) of Black Twitter," 2 June 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'trifling.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of trifling

1535, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for trifling

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The first known use of trifling was in 1535

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Cite this Entry

“Trifling.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 23 January 2020.

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How to pronounce trifling (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of trifling

: having little value or importance


tri·​fling | \ ˈtrī-fliŋ \

Kids Definition of trifling

1 : not serious : frivolous He worries about trifling details.
2 : of little value We paid a trifling amount.

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More from Merriam-Webster on trifling

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for trifling

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with trifling

Spanish Central: Translation of trifling

Nglish: Translation of trifling for Spanish Speakers

Comments on trifling

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


out of the ordinary or unreasonable

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