Once a day a small ration was doled out--pitifully small--enough to tantalise appetite, but not to still hunger.
And why do you tantalise me by making me dream of an unattainable perfection?
It will recall and remind and suggest and tantalise, and in the end drive you mad.
"You begin by being heavenly to people—and then you tantalise them."
A little snow fell, but only to tantalise us, for the ground never got covered more than half an inch.
They tantalise the fancy, but never reach the head nor touch the heart.
No good man would implant a living instinct in a child's nature and then love to tantalise and disappoint it.
Surely, that sweet strain was not intended to tantalise him.
You tantalise me to death with talking of conversations by the fireside.
Sibylla began again: to tantalise him seemed a necessity of her life.
1590s, from Latin Tantalus, from Greek Tantalos, king of Phrygia, son of Zeus, punished in the afterlife (for an offense variously given) by being made to stand in a river up to his chin, under branches laden with fruit, all of which withdrew from his reach whenever he tried to eat or drink. His story was known to Chaucer (c.1369).