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whiffler1

[hwif-ler, wif-] /ˈʰwɪf lər, ˈwɪf-/
noun
1.
a person who frequently shifts opinions, attitudes, interests, etc.
2.
a person who is vacillating or evasive in an argument.
Origin
1600-1610
1600-10; whiffle + -er1

whiffler2

[hwif-ler, wif-] /ˈʰwɪf lər, ˈwɪf-/
noun, History/Historical
1.
an attendant who clears the way for a procession.
Origin
1530-40; earlier wiffler armed attendant, equivalent to wiffle (variant of Middle English wifle, Old English wifel battle-ax) + -er1
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for whiffler

whiffler1

/ˈwɪflə/
noun
1.
a person who whiffles

whiffler2

/ˈwɪflə/
noun
1.
(archaic) an attendant who cleared the way for a procession
Word Origin
C16: from wifle battle-axe, from Old English wifel, of Germanic origin; the attendants originally carried weapons to clear the way
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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