verb (used without object), did·dled, did·dling.
- Informal. to toy; fool (usually followed by with): The kids have been diddling with the controls on the television set again.
- to waste time; dawdle (often followed by around): You would be finished by now if you hadn’t spent the morning diddling around.
- Informal. to move back and forth with short rapid motions.
verb (used with object), did·dled, did·dling.
- Informal. to move back and forth with short rapid motions; jiggle: Diddle the switch and see if the light comes on.
- to copulate with.
- to practice masturbation upon.
- (tr) to cheat or swindle
- (intr) an obsolete word for dawdle
- dialect to jerk (an object) up and down or back and forth; shake rapidly
“to cheat, swindle,” 1806, from dialectal duddle, diddle “to totter” (1630s). Meaning “waste time” is recorded from 1825. Meaning “to have sex with” is from 1879; that of “to masturbate” (especially of women) is from 1950s. More or less unrelated meanings that have gathered around a suggestive sound. Related: Diddled; diddling.