Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • intransitive v. To move in a weaving, wobbling, or rolling manner.
  • intransitive v. To turn or roll. Used of the stomach.
  • n. A wobble or roll.
  • n. An upset stomach.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Nausea; seething; bubbling; rolling boil.
  • n. An unsteady walk; a staggering or wobbling.
  • v. To feel nauseous, to churn (of stomach).
  • v. To twist and turn; to wriggle; to roll over.
  • v. To wobble, to totter, to waver; to walk with an unsteady gait.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Disturbance of the stomach; a feeling of nausea.
  • intransitive v. To heave; to be disturbed by nausea; -- said of the stomach.
  • intransitive v. To move irregularly to and fro; to roll.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To rumble, heave, or be disturbed with nausea: said of the stomach.
  • To rumble; ferment, and make a disturbance.
  • n. A rumbling, heaving, or similar disturbance in the stomach; a feeling of nausea.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • v. move unsteadily or with a weaving or rolling motion

Etymologies

Middle English wamelen, to feel nausea; see wemə- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Unknown, but possibly related to Latin vomere (to vomit), to Norwegian vamla (to stagger), and to Old Norse vāma (vomit). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • It's books like this that also remind me it will soon be the day that I head off for that first spring 'traypse and wamble' along the lanes and over the way to the village of Sydenham Dameral.

    Under the Greenwood Tree

  • Feeling her stomach wamble, she swallowed; dizziness threatened to overcome her.

    Genellan- Planetfall

  • And they seemed extremely wamble-cropt and chop-fallen; their feathers shone not, even their sickle-feathers drooped in the dust, and their combs were white.

    The Continental Monthly, Vol. 1, No. 1, January 1862 Devoted to Literature and National Policy

  • And sometimes, about two o'clock of an afternoon (these spells come most often about half an hour after lunch), the old angel of peregrination lifts himself up in me, and I yearn and wamble for a season afoot.

    Shandygaff

  • Most of us when we fall on the pavement (did you ever try it on Chestnut between Sixth and Seventh on a slippery day?) curse the granolithic trust and wamble there groaning.

    Pipefuls

  • It's a cheery sensation, you know, to find a man who has some imagination, but who has been unspoiled by Interesting People, and take him to hear them wamble.

    Our Mr. Wrenn: The Romantic Adventures of a Gentle Man

  • "She may shail, but she'll never wamble," replied his wife, decisively.

    The Woodlanders

  • Ay, 'a will sit studding and thinking as if 'a were going to turn chapel-member, and then do nothing but traypse and wamble about.

    Under the Greenwood Tree, or, the Mellstock quire; a rural painting of the Dutch school

  • The expressions he used to describe his own judicial preparations for the bench were very characteristic: “Ye see I first read a 'the pleadings, and then, after lettin' them wamble in my wame wi 'the toddy twa or three days, I gie my ain interlocutor.”

    Reminiscences of Scottish Life and Character

  • The black bulk of Kelpie lay outstretched on the yellow sand, giving now and then a sprawling kick or a wamble like a lumpy snake, and her soul commiserated each movement as if it had been the last throe of dissolution, while the grey fire of the mare's one visible fierce eye, turned up from the shadow of Malcolm's superimposed bulk, seemed to her tender heart a mute appeal for woman's help.

    The Marquis of Lossie

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Comments

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  • . . . finally hearing returned—with a vengeance. The first crisp nurse-rustle was a thunderclap; my first belly wamble, a crash of cymbals.
    --Vladimir Nabokov, 1974, Look at the Harlequins! p. 244

    June 13, 2009

  • “A piebald clown came wambling in to meet me, struck his hand on his foolish heart, and fell flat in the tan. Love at first sight.”
    —Walter de la Mare, Memoirs of a Midget

    June 9, 2009

  • to move unsteadily, to fee nausea, to growl (said of the stomach)

    February 26, 2007