Dawdle away


verb (used without object), dawdled, dawdling.
to waste time; idle; trifle; loiter: Stop dawdling and help me with these packages!
to move slowly, languidly, or dilatorily; saunter.
verb (used with object), dawdled, dawdling.
to waste (time) by or as if by trifling (usually followed by away ): He dawdled away the whole morning.

1650–60; variant of daddle to toddle

dawdler, noun
dawdlingly, adverb

1, 2. See loiter. 3. fritter, putter, idle, trifle.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To dawdle away
World English Dictionary
dawdle (ˈdɔːdəl)
vb (when tr, often foll by away)
1.  (intr) to be slow or lag behind
2.  to waste (time); trifle
[C17: of uncertain origin]

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

c.1656, perhaps a variant of daddle "to walk unsteadily." Perhaps influenced by daw, since the bird was regarded as sluggish and silly. Not in general use until c.1775.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature