American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- v. To cry weakly; whimper.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- To cry as a cat; mew.
- To cry as a child.
- n. The cry of a child.
- v. To cry weakly with a soft, high-pitched sound; to whimper; to whine.
- n. A soft cry or whimper; an act of mewling.
GNU Webster's 1913
- v. To cry, as a young child; to squall.
- v. cry weakly or softly
- Onomatopoeia; from 1599, apparently Shakespeare. (Wiktionary)
- Perhaps of imitative origin. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“i remember the first time we heard the word mewl in some class at school, and found out what it meant. something struck a chord, something hummed inside me ... an audible click. it is an intransitive verb that means to cry weakly, or whimper. there was finally a word for what that noise in my head was ...”
“In allusion to those remarkable feats of arms and -- legs -- Early's or Stuart's raids and Jackson's forced rapid marches, almost at horse-speed, when the men carried no rations, but ate corn-ears taken from the shucks and roasted them "at their pipes," the droll ruler would bring in that "mewl" again:”
“And finally you reveal the sham of yourself, the lip-service you pay to the idea that "[f] or a reviewer, I suppose all published work is fair game and, as writers, we should expect to take the good with the bad, review-wise" in your email, when you mewl pitiably that, "if I had received that email, I would have taken down the review.”
“I'm sorry you feel that way, he seemed to mewl out, turning away from her slowly to look out the window.”
“Only recently, one only has to look at them, to listen to them hiss and mewl about Haiti, about the poor and disenfranchised.”
“I was mesmerized with his humanity, his tiny features and newborn mewl and with the fact that he was mine.”
“There was a satisfying and abrupt halt to the mewl of the flute.”
“They are pretty creepy, but mewl like little kittens.”
“Every few seconds, a mewl emerges from the puff poking through the zip-top bag.”
“The beast instantly sprang awake and began to mewl again.”
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