from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- intransitive v. To find fault unnecessarily; raise trivial objections. See Synonyms at quibble.
- transitive v. To quibble about; detect petty flaws in.
- n. A carping or trivial objection.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- v. To criticise for petty or frivolous reasons.
- n. A petty or trivial objection or criticism.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- intransitive v. To raise captious and frivolous objections; to find fault without good reason.
- transitive v. To cavil at.
- n. A captious or frivolous objection.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. See cavel
- n. See cavel.
- To raise captious and frivolous objections; find fault without good reason; carp: frequently followed by at.
- To receive or treat with objections; find fault with.
- n. A captious or frivolous objection; an exception taken for the sake of argument; a carping argument.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. an evasion of the point of an argument by raising irrelevant distinctions or objections
- v. raise trivial objections
The association of Brother Cavil's name with the word 'cavil' seems almost irresistible.
And if they cavil at it, as MPs have cavilled and continue to cavil at the detection of their felonies, they may yet discover what the whoosh of the guillotine blade sounds like.
Forgive the cavil, but I can't help feeling that schools facing the most savage cuts in several generations as a direct result of the actions of banks such as Lloyds would have preferred to retain a music department, say, than the chance to share in the magic of the Lloyds story.
But is it too much to ask its friends for support—this time, for once, without cavil or reservation?
Unlike Albany, where the insiders rule without cavil, California voters have imposed a two-thirds vote requirement for the legislature to raise taxes.
I have only a cavil with George Amos's response Letters , Sept. 3, which quotes Faulkner's Nobel Prize speech.
One can cavil that Mr. Hamner relies too much on instances of big-army conventional warfare to argue this assertion.
To those, yes, American democrats who quibble, cavil, and lose themselves in conjecture over the risks to which the judge who allows a criminal to live subjects honest people, we countered with Maïmonides's axiom: "It is more satisfying to acquit thousands of the guilty than to execute one sole innocent man."
Though counts may cavil and marquises moan, the Spanish parliament, backed by the Spanish electorate, has now put a stop to this kind of discrimination – a policy powerfully endorsed by the king though succession in the monarchy remains, for the moment, exempt from reform.
Thus, all predictions and opinions expressed herein should be taken with that cavil.