Definitions

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

  • transitive v. To make, achieve, or get by contrivance: wangled a job for which she had no training.
  • transitive v. To manipulate or juggle, especially fraudulently.
  • transitive v. To extricate (oneself) from difficulty.
  • intransitive v. To use indirect, tricky, or fraudulent methods.
  • intransitive v. To extricate oneself by subtle or indirect means, as from difficulty; wriggle.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To obtain through manipulative or deceitful methods.
  • v. To falsify, as records.
  • v. To achieve through contrivance or cajolery.
  • n. The act of wangling

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

  • n. an instance of accomplishing something by scheming or trickery
  • v. achieve something by means of trickery or devious methods
  • v. tamper, with the purpose of deception

Etymologies

Origin unknown.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Blend of wag and dangle, first attested 1810-1820. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • "The Sunday schools must try to 'wangle' -- that was, a project their in-to 'wangle' -- that was, to project their in-enlarged task, and attempt to do what seemed impossible."

    Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 150, March 8, 1916

  • He never did a stroke of work that he could possibly "wangle" out of.

    Life in a Tank

  • "I should have to 'wangle' a good deal more than that," -- harshly.

    The Hermit of Far End

  • We are going to be married the first moment he can get leave again -- and I shall 'wangle' him into being a 'red tab' -- he has fought enough. "

    Man and Maid

  • Fraud hunters are most incensed by people who publicize fictitious exploits in the media or use them to get elected, promoted or wangle undeserved veterans 'benefits.

    Heroes or Villains?

  • If you decide on Rome, try to wangle a little extra time for Florence/Firenze and surrounding towns (Assisi, Siena, etc.).

    What would you say to your younger self? « Dating Jesus

  • You can imagine "Mad Men's" Betty Draper taking pride in being able to wangle a basic conversation in French.

    What's The Point Of A Degree In French?

  • She found him some clothes to wear and even managed to wangle the use of a jeep.

    A Covert Affair

  • The film was great, may even go to watch it again if I can wangle a leave pass.

    Star Trek

  • “After seventeen years, you do finally wangle a pet into our midst, and it turns out to be a complete fixer-upper.”

    Angry Young Man

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