wig·​gle | \ ˈwi-gəl How to pronounce wiggle (audio) \
wiggled; wiggling\ ˈwi-​g(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce wiggling (audio) \

Definition of wiggle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1 : to move to and fro with quick jerky or shaking motions : jiggle
2 : to proceed with or as if with twisting and turning movements : wriggle

transitive verb

: to cause to wiggle



Definition of wiggle (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of wiggling
2 : shellfish or fish in cream sauce with peas

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Other Words from wiggle


wiggly \ ˈwi-​g(ə-​)lē How to pronounce wiggly (audio) \ adjective

Examples of wiggle in a Sentence

Verb The puppy wiggled with excitement. the baby wiggled in her sleep
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Gently wiggling the filling helps the chocolate reach all corners of the mold. Daniel Wolfe, Quartzy, "Here’s what to do with your leftover candy corn," 30 Oct. 2019 The child in my arms felt like the world’s most delicate stranger, a Faberge egg that wiggled. Beth Spotswood, SFChronicle.com, "First lessons of parenthood come naturally," 23 Oct. 2019 John seemed to have no where to run, but the shifty receiver wiggled his way free. Randy Mcroberts, baltimoresun.com, "Harford football teams see seasons end in playoff losses," 16 Nov. 2019 That 11-store limit provides room for corporate giants such as Gap Inc. and well-funded startups including Warby Parker, Allbirds and Madison Reed to wiggle through. Shwanika Narayan, SFChronicle.com, "SF’s Hayes Valley has banned chain stores. They’re coming anyway," 6 Nov. 2019 Shapewear ads featuring women of various sizes wiggling into the garments flood social feeds. Sanam Yar, New York Times, "Spanx Started a Shapewear Revolution," 15 Oct. 2019 Kanani: Grunts like a piggy (Photo: Alex DeForest/Arizona Humane Society) While every pet is special in their own way and deserving of love, some pets truly have an indescribable way of wiggling deep into everyone’s hearts. Arizona Republic, azcentral, "A dog that grunts like a piggy and more up for adoption in Phoenix-area shelters this week," 13 Sep. 2019 The Moog slithers through your ear, wiggling to the beat in a way that seems to defy physics. Soleil Ho, SFChronicle.com, "Is America ready for a Colonel Sanders computer game?," 16 Sep. 2019 Insect legs were wiggling from one of her eye sockets. oregonlive, "Doctors find 4 bees living in woman’s eye, feeding off her tears," 10 Apr. 2019 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Looking beyond the wiggles Fan and his colleagues are hoping to continue the hunt for the mechanism behind the curious temblors. National Geographic, "New seismic phenomenon discovered, named stormquakes," 16 Oct. 2019 The team will turn to computer modeling to unify all their observations: the seismic wiggles, the currents, the calving, the snowfall and ponding meltwater. Paul Voosen, Science Magazine, "A project to monitor every aspect of a fast-shrinking glacier could hold an answer to an urgent question: How fast will seas rise?," 10 Oct. 2019 The wiggle is back, and that wasn’t (there) last year. Brad Biggs, chicagotribune.com, "Column: The Bears and Vikings have championship-caliber defenses. Mike Zimmer is catering to his. What will Matt Nagy do with Mitch Trubisky off to a slow start?," 27 Sep. 2019 All of the Celebrity Babies Who’ve Made Their Debuts in 2019 Ritter put her baby bump on display for the second time on Instagram in March, wearing a black-and-white polka-dot wiggle dress that highlighted her belly. Jen Juneau, PEOPLE.com, "Krysten Ritter Is a Mom! Actress Welcomes Son Bruce Julian Knight with Boyfriend Adam Granduciel," 8 Aug. 2019 The heatwave was the result of a wiggle in the Jetstream helping pull air from North Africa across France and toward Scandinavia. Scott K. Johnson, Ars Technica, "Another European heatwave, another link to climate change," 3 Aug. 2019 Needs to develop strength and put on some weight. Slasher with elusiveness and wiggle. oregonlive, "Recruiting: Oregon Ducks basketball hosting 2 of nation’s top 8 prospects this weekend," 12 Sep. 2019 Dixon made a strong case for a season-opening roster spot Thursday, rushing 13 times for 66 yards (5.1 yards per carry) and showing good burst and wiggle. Jonas Shaffer, baltimoresun.com, "Final Ravens 53-man roster projection: Finding space for Jaleel Scott, Patrick Mekari and more," 30 Aug. 2019 What looked like a back-and-forth wiggle in 2D now appears more like a corkscrew motion. Scientific American, "Nanomachines, Jellyfish Hugs and Hurricane Dorian From Space: The Week's Best Science GIFs," 30 Aug. 2019

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


13th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1


1816, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for wiggle


Middle English wiglen, from or akin to Middle Dutch or Middle Low German wiggelen to totter; akin to Old English wegan to move — more at way

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Time Traveler for wiggle

Time Traveler

The first known use of wiggle was in the 13th century

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Statistics for wiggle

Last Updated

8 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Wiggle.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wiggles. Accessed 9 December 2019.

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More Definitions for wiggle


How to pronounce wiggle (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of wiggle

: to move up and down or from side to side with short quick motions


wig·​gle | \ ˈwi-gəl How to pronounce wiggle (audio) \
wiggled; wiggling

Kids Definition of wiggle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to move up and down or from side to side with quick short motions She wiggled her toes.
2 : to proceed with twisting and turning movements It was an awful tangled mess, but … there was room for him to wiggle through …— Gary Paulsen, Hatchet



Kids Definition of wiggle (Entry 2 of 2)

: a twisting turning motion

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More from Merriam-Webster on wiggle

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for wiggle

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with wiggle

Spanish Central: Translation of wiggle

Nglish: Translation of wiggle for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wiggle for Arabic Speakers

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