Definition of wheedle
- wheedle one's way into favor
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
He wheedled quite a bit of money from her.
She pleaded and wheedled, but I wouldn't be swayed.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'wheedle.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Wheedle has been a part of the English lexicon since the mid-17th century, though no one is quite sure how the word made its way into English. (It has been suggested that the term may have derived from an Old English word that meant "to beg," but this is far from certain.) Once established in the language, however, wheedle became a favorite of some of the language's most illustrious writers. Wheedle and related forms appear in the writings of Wordsworth, Dickens, Kipling, Dryden, Swift, Scott, Tennyson, and Pope, among others.
: to persuade someone to do something or to give you something by saying nice things
What made you want to look up wheedle? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).