dabbled


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dab·ble

 (dăb′əl)
v. dab·bled, dab·bling, dab·bles
v.tr.
To splash or spatter with or as if with a liquid: "The moon hung over the harbor dabbling the waves with gold" (Katherine Mansfield).
v.intr.
1. To splash liquid gently and playfully.
2. To undertake something superficially or without serious intent: "The restaurant business entails more than ... dabbling in interior design" (Andy Birsh).
3. To feed by moving the bill back and forth just below the surface or on the bottom in shallow water. Used of ducks.

[Possibly from Dutch dabbelen, frequentative of dabben, to strike, tap.]

dab′bler n.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.dabbled - covered with bright patches (often used in combination); "waves dabbled with moonlight"; "a blood-spattered room"; "gardens splashed with color"; "kitchen walls splattered with grease"
covered - overlaid or spread or topped with or enclosed within something; sometimes used as a combining form; "women with covered faces"; "covered wagons"; "a covered balcony"
References in classic literature ?
Pontellier had brought her sketching materials, which she sometimes dabbled with in an unprofessional way.
There were a number of hangers-on and outsiders about the Commons, who, without being proctors themselves, dabbled in common-form business, and got it done by real proctors, who lent their names in consideration of a share in the spoil; - and there were a good many of these too.
Moncharmin did not know a note of music, but he called the minister of education and fine arts by his Christian name, had dabbled a little in society journalism and enjoyed a considerable private income.
One hand was almost severed at the wrist and his silvery hair was dabbled in blood.
Here long ago the girls of Sou, the darlings of the King, Dabbled their shining skirts with dew from the gracious blooms of Spring.
His mind, therefore, had become stored with all kinds of mystic lore; he had dabbled a little in astrology, alchemy, divination;[2] knew how to detect stolen money, and to tell where springs of water lay hidden; in a word, by the dark nature of his knowledge he had acquired the name of the "High German Doctor," which is pretty nearly equivalent to that of necromancer.
On the hearth were two or three long and thick tresses of grey human hair, also dabbled in blood, and seeming to have been pulled out by the roots.
The truth is, I never dabbled in flashy matters, but jogged on in the good old sober routine of the calling -- a calling in which I should, no doubt, have remained to the present hour, but for a little accident which happened to me in the prosecution of one of the usual business operations of the profession.
His vesture was dabbled in blood--and his broad brow, with all the features of the face, was besprinkled with the scarlet horror.
mare, dabbled with white froth, went past with trailing
I've dabbled a little in drawing myself, and I assure you that to put one dot where you want it is a marvel with a pen close to a piece of paper.
Four or five years earlier he had taken a year's course at a technological college at Worcester, and dabbled in the laboratory with a friendly professor of physics; and the images supplied by that experience still cropped up, at unexpected moments, through the totally different associations of thought in which he had since been living.