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[in-duhlj] /ɪnˈdʌldʒ/
verb (used without object), indulged, indulging.
to yield to an inclination or desire; allow oneself to follow one's will (often followed by in):
Dessert came, but I didn't indulge. They indulged in unbelievable shopping sprees.
verb (used with object), indulged, indulging.
to yield to, satisfy, or gratify (desires, feelings, etc.):
to indulge one's appetite for sweets.
to yield to the wishes or whims of; be lenient or permissive with:
to indulge a child.
to allow (oneself) to follow one's will (usually followed by in):
to indulge oneself in reckless spending.
Commerce. to grant an extension of time, for payment or performance, to (a person, company, etc.) or on (a bill, note, etc.).
Origin of indulge
1630-40; < Latin indulgēre to be lenient (toward), accede, take pleasure (in)
Related forms
indulger, noun
indulgingly, adverb
preindulge, verb (used with object), preindulged, preindulging.
quasi-indulged, adjective
reindulge, verb, reindulged, reindulging.
unindulged, adjective
unindulging, adjective
3. pamper, favor. See humor. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for indulging
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • These discouragements, however, did not hinder me from indulging my wishes.

  • Partly he is indulging his humour by describing others who were more astray than he was.

    Bunyan James Anthony Froude
  • The rest of us set out on a good long walk, indulging the hope other teams would surely meet and relieve us somewhere on the road.

    The Choctaw Freedmen Robert Elliott Flickinger
  • The deputy followed me, indulging in a tirade of most abusive language.

  • You are either loved or you are not, and hence the absolute foolishness of indulging the passion.

    The Twin Hells John N. Reynolds
British Dictionary definitions for indulging


when intr, often foll by in. to yield to or gratify (a whim or desire for): to indulge a desire for new clothes, to indulge in new clothes
(transitive) to yield to the wishes of; pamper: to indulge a child
(transitive) to allow oneself the pleasure of something: at Christmas he liked to indulge himself
(transitive) (commerce) to allow (a debtor) an extension of time for payment of (a bill, etc)
(intransitive) (informal) to take alcoholic drink, esp to excess
Derived Forms
indulger, noun
indulgingly, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Latin indulgēre to concede, from -dulgēre, probably related to Greek dolikhos long, Gothic tulgus firm
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for indulging



1630s, "to grant as a favor;" 1650s, of both persons and desires, "to treat with unearned favor;" a back-formation from indulgence, or else from Latin indulgere "to be complaisant." Related: Indulged; indulging.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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