verb (used without object), caviled, caviling or (especially British) cavilled, cavilling.
to raise irritating and trivial objections; find fault with unnecessarily (usually followed by at or about ): He finds something to cavil at in everything I say.
verb (used with object), caviled, caviling or (especially British) cavilled, cavilling.
to oppose by inconsequential, frivolous, or sham objections: to cavil each item of a proposed agenda.
a trivial and annoying objection.
the raising of such objections.

1540–50; < Latin cavillārī to jeer, scoff, quibble, verbal derivative of cavilla jesting, banter

caviler; especially British, caviller, noun
cavilingly; especially British, cavillingly, adverb
outcavil, verb (used with object), outcaviled, outcaviling or (especially British) outcavilled, outcavilling.
uncaviling, adjective
uncavilling, adjective

1. carp, complain, criticize. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
cavil (ˈkævɪl)
vb , (US) -ils, -illing, -illed, -ils, -iling, -iled
1.  (intr; foll by at or about) to raise annoying petty objections; quibble; carp
2.  a captious trifling objection
[C16: from Old French caviller, from Latin cavillārī to jeer, from cavilla raillery]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

1548, from M.Fr. caviller "to mock, jest," from L. cavillari "to satirize, argue scoffingly," from cavilla "jeering," related to calumnia (see calumny).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
As a sensitive representation of the music, it was beyond cavil.
The critics will doubtless find new reasons to cavil soon enough.
If one were to cavil about any aspect of the sushi bar, it would be that the
  selection could be enlarged.
Still, there was little room for cavil in an evening so intelligently conceived
  and vibrantly executed.
Related Words
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