Definitions

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

  • intransitive v. Chiefly British To complain or protest, especially in an annoying or persistent manner.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A cry.
  • n. A complaint.
  • v. To complain, especially in an annoying or persistent manner.
  • v. To whine.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To whine.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To whine.

Etymologies

Dialectal alteration of Middle English whinsen, from Old English hwinsian.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English whinsen, from Old English hwinsian ("to whine"), from Proto-Germanic *hwinisōnan (“to whine”), from Proto-Germanic *hwīnanan (“to whizz, rush, swoosh, whine, hiss”), from Proto-Indo-European *ḱwey- (“to hiss, whistle, whisper”). Cognate with German winseln ("to whine, whimper"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • UPDATE: Thank you to one of my readers for edited Wikipedia to get rid of the whinge from the above-mentioned page!

    Wikipedia very highly trusted in Japan

  • The police complaint should be thus: You phone a number where a monotone voice tells you what button to push for your particular whinge from a list. 1 caller in 5 will be randomly cut off and have to call back.

    I Could Want You, But I Don’t. « POLICE INSPECTOR BLOG

  • But I want lunch and after doing the same trip yesterday, my back hurts and I'm exhausted so I'm in whinge mode.

    Procrastination rules!

  • Then, too, the whinge from the more hawk-like Liberals is that “we left you guys a whopping surplus and you’ve handed it out all over the map, so now you get to flirt with the danger of not breaking even”.

    2008 February 27 « Unambiguously Ambidextrous

  • I registered my academia 101 blog at PhD weblogs because Tom told me about it. my other one, though, isn't exactly a secret cos it's linked from my online CV (which is linked to the Asian Australian Studies page). you've probably read my whingey, half-arsed posts about feeling constricted in what I can say or post about. it's v. annoying (me having a whinge, that is).

    Nothing Much

  • That's not a "whinge" its a professional opinion of an Ops sysadmin that maintains full scale enterprise scale web servers and J2EE application servers.

    £100K but where was the QA?

  • Americans do not, by and large, even know the term "whinge".

    God I hope Murdoch buys the Journal

  • Now that winter has finally arrived and everyone has upped their weather complaint mode from "whinge" to "whine," it's time to put things in perspective.

    Toronto Sun

  • It's a genre that -- if you grew up gaming -- probably makes up some of your earliest memories: my own definitely revolve around waiting impatiently for the TI99/4A's cassette deck to finish screeching its way through loading Scott Adams 'Adventure series (now playable online here) and pondering the etymology of "pieces of eight", continuing through my teens to the unmistakably British worlds of Graham Cluely's Jacaranda Jim and Humbug (the games that first taught me the word' whinge ').

    The EXAMINE'd Life: Keeping Interactive Fiction Alive - Boing Boing

  • "whinge" was a common term for me growing up on the east coast

    God I hope Murdoch buys the Journal

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • I'm forever instructing my kids to quit whinging, to the bemusement of most bystanders.

    August 5, 2008

  • I learned it in Australia. It's still weird to me, and Americans will wonder what you're saying unless you leave out the G and say "whine."

    August 5, 2008

  • Some Americans are. I've heard and read it here.

    August 5, 2008

  • I didn't realise Americans weren't familiar with this.

    August 5, 2008

  • thanks, qroqqa, for the explanation. I am going to do my best to see that the word makes it to the other branches of English (e.g. American, Euro-English).

    August 5, 2008

  • From an Old English hwinsian, which is the base of 'whine' with an -s- suffix (also seen in 'cleanse' and 'bless'). The change to -g- /dʒ/ is a Scottish and Northern development in Middle English.

    Going by the OED quotations, it remained a Scottish, Irish, and Northern variant into the twentieth century, and was taken back into Southern English via the familiar Australian use.

    August 5, 2008

  • I just came across this word in a comment to an article on the Guardian website about anti-Chinese protests. The commenter, who goes by the cool name TheEarlofSuave, observes: "If you want to be a leader in the world, then you have to take criticism without whinging."

    Like sionnach, I too thought this was a portmanteau word. I'm putting it on my fibrous words list because it so vividly evokes that particular combination of self-pity, hurt, defensiveness, and tediousness charisteristic of whingers.

    August 5, 2008

  • not a hybrid word! Shares Old English and Old Norse roots with whine, that's all.

    March 31, 2008

  • August 17, 2007

  • moan and whine

    February 17, 2007