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

  • intransitive v. To flow or fall in drops or an unsteady stream; trickle: Water dribbled from the leaky faucet.
  • intransitive v. To let saliva drip from the mouth; drool.
  • intransitive v. Sports To dribble a ball or puck.
  • intransitive v. Sports To advance by dribbling: dribbled down the court.
  • transitive v. To let flow or fall in drops or an unsteady stream.
  • transitive v. Sports To move (a ball or puck) by repeated light bounces or kicks, as in basketball or soccer.
  • transitive v. Sports To hit (a baseball, for example) so that it bounces slowly.
  • n. A weak, unsteady stream; a trickle.
  • n. A small quantity; a bit.
  • n. Sports The act of dribbling a ball.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To let saliva drip from the mouth, to drool
  • v. To fall in drops or an unsteady stream, to trickle
  • v. In various ball games, to run with the ball, controlling its path with the feet
  • v. To bounce the ball on the floor with one hand at a time, enabling the player to move with it;
  • v. To advance by dribbling
  • v. to let something fall in drips
  • v. in various ball games, to move the ball, by repeated light kicks
  • n. A weak, unsteady stream; a trickle.
  • n. A small amount of a liquid.
  • n. In sport, the act of dribbling.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To fall in drops or small drops, or in a quick succession of drops.
  • intransitive v. To slaver, as a child or an idiot; to drivel.
  • intransitive v. To fall weakly and slowly.
  • intransitive v. In basketball, football and similar games, to dribble{2} the ball.
  • intransitive v. To live or pass one's time in a trivial fashion.
  • transitive v. To let fall in drops.
  • transitive v. In basketball and various other games, to propel (the ball) by successive slight hits or kicks so as to keep it always in control.
  • n. A drizzling shower; a falling or leaking in drops.
  • n. An act of dribbling{2} a ball.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To fall in drops or small particles, or in a quick succession of drops: as, water dribbles from the eaves.
  • To fall weakly and slowly.
  • To act or think feebly; want vigor or energy.
  • To be of trifling importance.
  • To throw down or let fall in drops or bits.
  • To give out in small portions: often with out.
  • In foot-ball and other games, to give a slight kick or shove to, as the ball, without intending to send it far.
  • n. Any small quantity of dropping or trickling fluid; a dropping or dripping: as, the dribble from the eaves.
  • n. Drizzly or wet weather.
  • To drivel; slaver.
  • n. A variant of drivel.

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

  • v. propel,
  • n. flowing in drops; the formation and falling of drops of liquid
  • n. saliva spilling from the mouth
  • n. the propulsion of a ball by repeated taps or kicks
  • v. let or cause to fall in drops
  • v. let saliva drivel from the mouth
  • v. run or flow slowly, as in drops or in an unsteady stream


Frequentative of obsolete drib, alteration of drip.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
drib +‎ -le (“early modern English frequentative suffix”) (Wiktionary)



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  • A true dribble, a laborious and diligent servant. --old provincial term from the north of England. Grose's A Provincial Glossary, 1787.

    May 7, 2011