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[dim-puh l] /ˈdɪm pəl/
a small, natural hollow area or crease, permanent or transient, in some soft part of the human body, especially one formed in the cheek in smiling.
any similar slight depression.
verb (used with object), dimpled, dimpling.
to mark with or as if with dimples; produce dimples in:
A smile dimpled her face.
  1. to dent (a metal sheet) so as to permit use of bolts or rivets with countersunk heads.
  2. to mark (a metal object) with a drill point as a guide for further drilling.
verb (used without object), dimpled, dimpling.
to form or show dimples.
Origin of dimple
1350-1400; Middle English dimpel, Old English *dympel; cognate with German Tümpel pool
Related forms
dimply, adjective
undimpled, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for dimpling
Historical Examples
  • Her dimpling smile responded to a demand sufficiently familiar.

    The Game and the Candle Eleanor M. Ingram
  • The girl looked at him, blushing and dimpling with shy delight.

    Bloom of Cactus Robert Ames Bennet
  • The great river swept by with hardly a surface motion, dimpling and rippling under the last touch of the day breeze.

    The Road to Frontenac Samuel Merwin
  • Sandy Rowl responded readily to this dimpling, flashing banter.

    Harbor Tales Down North Norman Duncan
  • The dimpling smiles, the quick sympathy of this innocent, sensuous young creature, drew him out of his depression.

    The Vision Spendid William MacLeod Raine
  • "Heartsease for thought," said Gerard, and kissed her dimpling mouth.

    From the Car Behind Eleanor M. Ingram
  • "My young man has what you'll consider one serious fault," said Susan, dimpling.

    Saturday's Child Kathleen Norris
  • "I don't care why you sing so long as you sing," said Essie, dimpling again.

    The Lady Doc Caroline Lockhart
  • George twisted himself on the garden seat so that he could look up into Rebecca Mary's dimpling face.

    Rebecca's Promise Frances R. Sterrett
  • dimpling with pleasure, her rosy face beaming, Peggy began to read.

    The Merryweathers Laura E. Richards
British Dictionary definitions for dimpling


a small natural dent or crease in the flesh, esp on the cheeks or chin
any slight depression in a surface
a bubble or dent in glass
to make or become dimpled
(intransitive) to produce dimples by smiling
Derived Forms
dimply, adjective
Word Origin
C13 dympull; compare Old English dyppan to dip, German Tümpel pool
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 dimpling



c.1400, perhaps existing in Old English as a word meaning "pothole," perhaps ultimately from Proto-Germanic *dumpilaz, which has yielded words in other languages meaning "small pit, little pool" (e.g. German Tümpel "pool," Middle Low German dümpelen, Dutch dompelen "to plunge"). Related: Dimples.


1570s (implied in dimpled), from dimple (n.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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dimpling in Medicine

dimpling dim·pling (dĭm'plĭng)
A condition marked by the formation of natural or artificial dimples.

dimple dim·ple (dĭm'pəl)

  1. A small natural indentation in the chin, cheek, or sacral region, probably due to some developmental fault in the subcutaneous connective tissue or in underlying bone.

  2. A depression of similar appearance resulting from trauma or the contraction of scar tissue.

dim'ple v.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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