• WordNet 3.6
    • v tantalise harass with persistent criticism or carping "The children teased the new teacher","Don't ride me so hard over my failure","His fellow workers razzed him when he wore a jacket and tie"
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Tantalise tan′ta-līz to torment by presenting something to excite desire, but keeping it out of reach
    • ***


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Tantalus, in Gr. mythology, who stood in Tartarus up to his chin in water, with branches of fruit over his head, the water receding when he wished to drink, and the fruit when he wished to eat.


In literature:

The few drops that fell upon his patiently protruded tongue served only to tantalise him.
"Philosopher Jack" by R.M. Ballantyne
The sinister muzzle seemed to be following him, tantalisingly menacing.
"Wilmshurst of the Frontier Force" by Percy F. Westerman
It is tantalising merely to view them from a distance.
"The Heart of Nature" by Francis Younghusband
Life has so many of these tantalising half-glimpses, which are never anything more.
"The Giant's Robe" by F. Anstey
The same veil of shy grace which had fallen upon her in the wood, was around her still, and tantalised him.
"The End of a Coil" by Susan Warner
She remained standing before him, helpless, tantalising, unapproachable, in her childlike dignity.
"Captain Desmond, V.C." by Maud Diver
It seemed a note of triumph, as if uttered to tantalise me!
"The Quadroon" by Mayne Reid
Perhaps she had a little insight into Mr Wentworth's feelings, and no doubt it was rather tantalising.
"The Perpetual Curate" by Mrs [Margaret] Oliphant
I never knew any thing so provoking, so tantalising!
"The Buccaneer" by Mrs. S. C. Hall
Tantalising snares To dull the brain with phantoms that are not.
"All About Coffee" by William H. Ukers
He took that sort of thing too indifferently and one was always left in the tantalising doubt as to whether he cared or not.
"Duncan Polite" by Marian Keith
The Captain found himself in a tantalising position.
"Captain Dieppe" by Anthony Hope
The sun rose only to tantalise.
"The Gaunt Gray Wolf" by Dillon Wallace
Paliser, who knew perfectly well what she was at, smiled tantalisingly.
"The Paliser case" by Edgar Saltus
The situation was galling and tantalising.
"The Sign of Silence" by William Le Queux
Why should you care to tantalise me with a moment?
"The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 11 (of 25)" by Robert Louis Stevenson
While thus cogitating, I was further tantalised by reading in a newspaper some later accounts from the diggings.
"Lost Lenore" by Charles Beach
He stole them by night, when the moon was behind the trees, and mocked the dead spirits, calling them by evil and tantalising names.
"Sanders of the River" by Edgar Wallace
He looks after her with an irritated inquiry, born of his long tantalisation.
"Doctor Cupid" by Rhoda Broughton
The water was under his eyes, only to tantalise him; and by so doing increase his eagerness to obtain it.
"The Headless Horseman" by Mayne Reid

In news:

Tantalising evidence that intestinal bacteria can influence mood.
Girls Aloud reunite to tantalise fans with a glimpse of their new video.
Three years into the euro zone's debt crisis, Germany's finance minister hinted tantalisingly last week at a potential breakthrough.

In science:

Although this is so far only one example, it provides a tantalising suggestion that we may be able to directly link the properties of a star forming cluster on scales of 10–50 pc with those of more compact structures on scales of 0.1–1 pc.
Do stellar winds play a decisive role in feeding AGN?
The no(1) term here is (log n)O(log log n) which is tantalisingly close to best possible(?) logO(1) n.
An almost linear time algorithm for finding Hamilton cycles in sparse random graphs with minimum degree at least three
Recently, events observed at the highest energy of the Large Electron Positron Collider (LEP) at CERN in Geneva have given a tantalising hint that the Higgs particle might indeed have a mass around 115 GeV.
TESLA Technical Design Report Part I: Executive Summary
A particularly tantalising challenge of fundamental physics is posed by gravity, the interaction responsible for the large–scale structure of the universe.
TESLA Technical Design Report Part I: Executive Summary
Tevatron, but so far without success, though tantalising hints have been reported at LEP.
TESLA Technical Design Report Part I: Executive Summary
At LEP a tantalising indication of a Higgs signal has been observed which could be confirmed at the Tevatron or the LHC.
TESLA Technical Design Report Part I: Executive Summary
Most tantalising of all, though, are the reports of considerable iron line emission [Rees].
Particles and Fields in Radio Galaxies: A Summary
I X-ray bursts in a number of LMXBs (e.g., ), providing tantalisingly suggestive evidence for weakly magnetic neutron stars with millisecond spin periods (see and for more details about kHz QPOs and burst oscillations in LMXBs).
An observational review of accretion-driven millisecond X-ray pulsars
It is in this context that discoveries this year of narrow states in the heavy flavour sector provide tantalising hints of this un derlying dynamics elsewhere in spectroscopy.
The End of the Constituent Quark Model?
The S-wave thresholds for pb1 and pf1 are around 1400MeV, which is signi ficantly below the predicted 1.8GeV for lattice or model hybrids and tantalisingly in line with one of the claimed signals for activity in the 1−+ partial wave.
The End of the Constituent Quark Model?
It is perhaps this feature that creates the most tantalising challenge from the perspective of QCD: why does Q have width below 10MeV, perhaps no more than 1MeV.
The End of the Constituent Quark Model?
In our example above, of a photon emitted by an atom in the vicinity of a quasar, the expansion factor ∆(t)/∆(0) ∼ 1033 suggests that the tantalising Planck lengthscale lP ∼ 10−33 cm at the time of emission may be within reach of experiments performed on the detected photon now at a lengthscale ∼ 1 cm.
Astrophysical and Cosmological Tests of Quantum Theory
Describing the matter produced in ultra-relativistic heavy-ion collisions with a limited set of global variables is a tantalising task.
Global variables and correlations: Summary of the results presented at the Quark Matter 2012 conference
The largeness of the lepton mixing angles contrasts with the smallness of the quark mixing angles, and this observation, together with the smallness of neutrino masses, provides new and tantalising clues in the search for the origin of quark and lepton flavour.
Neutrino Mass and Mixing with Discrete Symmetry
For many years there has been tantalising but not completely convincing evidence that quasar luminosity correlates with host galaxy luminosity (e.g.
The AGN/Normal Galaxy Connection : Summary