• WordNet 3.6
    • v dandle pet "the grandfather dandled the small child"
    • v dandle move (a baby) up and down in one's arms or on one's knees
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Dandle To move up and down on one's knee or in one's arms, in affectionate play, as an infant. "Ye shall be dandled . . . upon her knees."
    • Dandle To play with; to put off or delay by trifles; to wheedle. "Captains do so dandle their doings, and dally in the service, as it they would not have the enemy subdued."
    • Dandle To treat with fondness, as if a child; to fondle; to toy with; to pet. "They have put me in a silk gown and gaudy fool's cap; I as ashamed to be dandled thus.""The book, thus dandled into popularity by bishops and good ladies, contained many pieces of nursery eloquence."
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Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • dandle To shake or move up and down in the arms or on the knee, as a nurse tosses or trots an infant; amuse by play.
    • dandle Hence To fondle or make much of; treat as a child; pet; amuse.
    • dandle To play or trifle with; put off with cajolery or trifling excuses; wheedle; cajole.
    • dandle To defer or protract by trifles.
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Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Dandle dan′dl to play with: to fondle or toss in the arms, as a baby.
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Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
Cf. G. dändeln, to trifly, dandle, OD. & Prov. G. danten, G. tand, trifly, prattle; Scot. dandill, dander, to go about idly, to trifly
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
Prob. Teut.; cf. Ger. tändelntand, a toy.


In literature:

Tell me, were you ever dandled in a mother's arms?
"The Gorilla Hunters" by R.M. Ballantyne
He has dandled me on his knee when I was a baby.
"The Genius" by Margaret Horton Potter
Whom whitest fortune dandled has too much.
"The Hesperides & Noble Numbers: Vol. 1 and 2" by Robert Herrick
Death, a bearded baby for a girl to dandle.
"The Comedies of William Congreve Volume 1 [of 2]" by William Congreve
In his right hand he dandled with easy familiarity an exceedingly long-barrelled revolver.
"Desert Conquest" by A. M. Chisholm
The great men and women of earth were not dandled in the lap of luxury.
"Autobiography of Frank G. Allen, Minister of the Gospel" by Frank G. Allen
At last Aristide fed him desperately, dandled him eventually to sleep, and returned to an excited pillow.
"The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol" by William J. Locke
His father had dandled him up-side-down, ending with, There now!
"A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume II (of II)" by Augustus de Morgan
Little Clarice, how often have I dandled her on my knee in the years that have gone by!
"A Pessimist" by Robert Timsol
He has no pipe, and he talks kindly to his wife, and dandles his son on his knee.
"Highways and Byways in Surrey" by Eric Parker

In poetry:

My mother dandled me and sang,
'How young it is, how young!'
And made a golden cradle
That on a willow swung.
"A Song From 'The Player Queen'" by William Butler Yeats
Let's to Bethle'm go, and see
The Son of God on Mary's knee,
Or Mary dandling in her hands
The babe, who all the world commands!
"Let Us Go To Bethlehem " by Rees Prichard
"I will dandle thy son as a mother may;
And his lips shall lie where my own Son's lay.
Come, dear little one, come to me;
The Mother of God shall suckle thee."
"Mary Of Magdala" by Edith Nesbit
To think harm of her our good feelings forbid us
By whom when a babe you were dandled and fed;
Who living so many good offices did us,
I ne'er can persuade me would hurt us when dead.
"Nurse Green" by Charles Lamb
She dandled Tommy on the knee;
They both were equal, both were free;
Held conversation tete à tete;
The cake and sugar-plumbs were sweet.
These visits often were repeated;
But not a visit was regretted.
"The Valentine" by William Hutton
Who shall sing a simple ditty all about the Willow,
Dainty-fine and delicate as any bending spray
That dandles high the happy bird that flutters there to trill a
Tremulously tender song of greeting to the May.
"The Old-Home Folks" by James Whitcomb Riley