verb (used with object), coddled, coddling.
to treat tenderly; nurse or tend indulgently; pamper: to coddle children when they're sick.
to cook (eggs, fruit, etc.) in water that is just below the boiling point; cook gently.

1590–1600; variant of caudle, v. use of caudle

coddler, noun
uncoddled, adjective

1. indulge, baby, humor, spoil. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
coddle (ˈkɒdəl)
1.  to treat with indulgence
2.  to cook (something, esp eggs) in water just below the boiling point
3.  dialect (Irish) stew made from ham and bacon scraps
[C16: of obscure origin; perhaps related to caudle]

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

c.1600, "boil gently," probably from caudle "warm drink for invalids," from Anglo-Fr. caudel (c.1300), ult. from L. calidium "warm drink," neut. of calidus "hot," from calere "be warm" (see calorie). Verb meaning "treat tenderly" first recorded 1815 (in Jane Austen's "Emma").
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
They rush out to buy the plant, take it home and coddle it in a toasty living
We need students to learn that it is their responsibility to get their
  education and no one is going to coddle them.
But dads are programmed to challenge their kids, not coddle them.
Originally created to coddle these local monopolies, they've now become a
  hazard to their existence.
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