variants or less commonly whiney
whinier; whiniest
: characterized by whining:
: having a high-pitched, shrill or plaintive quality
a whiny voice
"So What'cha Want," despite its jittery organ, whiny guitar, and distorted vocals, turned out to be one of the least predictable-sounding hit singles of recent years.Alan Light
: characterized by or given to complaining
whiny children
Their whiny, even beggarly tone was hardly the supremely confident sound of the American Century.Sidney Blumenthal
… offering little more than a whiny list of grievances …Linda Chavez
In this conversational memoir, Nancy comes across as honest, if a little whiny, and a major-league worrier.Ilene Cooper
whininess noun
A few years ago, thirtysomething was widely reviled for encouraging the yuppie ethos of materialism and whininess. Mark Harris
… I heard something, a certain whininess in his voice, maybe, that led me to conclude that I wasn't about to get a pasting … Nick Hornby

Examples of whiny in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web For instance, mid-celebration, a birthday celebrant received a whiny hungry call from her husband, and zap, my bill increased by $100. Jacobina Martin, Washington Post, 14 Nov. 2023 The star takes a whiny victim role and turns it into a master class in reactive comic acting. David Rooney, The Hollywood Reporter, 19 Sep. 2023 This is the period where the development of the idea of the Jewish American Princess comes up, of the American Jewish man as being like nerdy and whiny compared to the strong Israeli. Chris Klimek, Smithsonian Magazine, 27 July 2023 Over the coming decades, drillers are poised to become even more whiny and reactionary than ever. Kate Aronoff, The New Republic, 8 Aug. 2023 And for Luis, Julio is a whiny pain in the ass who just might pester him into getting his life back on track. Time, 28 July 2023 Chatterjee, a box-office favourite, was stripped of all his charm and cast as a whiny old writer and alcoholic who routinely pisses his pants. Hazlitt, 12 July 2023 Our hero has grown up into a whiny, troublemaking teenager who tends to break rules (like marrying Padmé, now a galactic senator) and generally irritate his Jedi Master, Obi-Wan, who loves him like a pesky younger brother. Scottie Andrew, CNN, 4 May 2023 Despite my whiny complaints, the scan was totally worth it. Sheila Cosgrove Baylis, Peoplemag, 8 June 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'whiny.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1746, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of whiny was in 1746

Dictionary Entries Near whiny

Cite this Entry

“Whiny.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 Nov. 2023.

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