Definition of cuddle in English:

cuddle

verb

[WITH OBJECT]
  • 1 Hold close in one's arms as a way of showing love or affection:

    ‘he cuddles the baby close’
    ‘they were cuddling each other in the back seat’
    [no object] ‘the pair have been spotted kissing and cuddling’
    • ‘Despite what pet lovers may think, the giant lizards don't like to be cuddled, patted on the head or kissed.’
    • ‘There is the occasional baboon, cuddling its baby on the cement ledge.’
    • ‘She should be cuddling her baby son right now or watching with fascination as he learns to walk and talk.’
    • ‘The youngest, a girl, will be the most spoiled, for she will be the final baby and will be cuddled and loved.’
    • ‘Caressing, hugging, stroking, and cuddling all send a chain reaction of chemicals to signal your brain that this is pleasurable.’
    • ‘With that she pushes closer to me, cuddling her warm body against mine.’
    • ‘I picked her up, cuddling her close to my chest, and ran out of there.’
    • ‘He always kisses me and cuddles me and tells me he loves me every time he goes out of the door - which is what he did yesterday and I haven't seen or heard from him since.’
    • ‘Haslam said he consensually kissed and cuddled a patient.’
    • ‘And she's always loved to be cuddled and nursed and made a fuss of by her parents.’
    • ‘A flight from Milan or maybe Paris arrives, and they rush up to enthusiastically kiss and cuddle a tanned young man pushing a baggage trolley.’
    • ‘The delighted new father cuddling his tiny baby cannot help but catch your attention.’
    • ‘She's not an overtly affectionate cat and when she cuddles me in bed, I always feel loved.’
    • ‘A few weeks after her arrival she began to thrive because she actually had someone to cuddle her and love her now.’
    • ‘She heeded the reassurances of people who told her that it is normal and safe to fall asleep while cuddling a tiny baby.’
    • ‘I cuddle my baby and close my eyes, marking a moment of grace.’
    • ‘The nannies and carers are not allowed to kiss or cuddle the children and they are not permitted to play with other kids.’
    • ‘Sure, we cuddle our babies, and fondle our new lovers, but in every relationship there comes a point when kisses are perfunctory farewells and hugs are doled out sparingly.’
    • ‘Later, he delighted guests by cuddling a robot baby that reacts happily to hugs and play, blinks its eyes and even cries like a real infant.’
    • ‘They kept kissing him and cuddling him and combing his hair.’
    hug, embrace, clasp, hold tight, hold in one's arms, fold in one's arms
    embrace, hug, caress, pet, fondle
    snuggle, nestle, curl, nuzzle, lie close
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[no object, with adverbial] Lie or sit close:
      ‘Rebecca cuddled up to Mum’
      ‘they cuddled together to keep out the cold’
      • ‘I have a lovely picture of Natasha and her cat cuddled up together.’
      • ‘Grace cuddled closer into his strong chest, and he held her tighter.’
      • ‘Diana was cuddling up with Braxton, who had first turned a nice shade of pink when Diana sat very close next to him.’
      • ‘Unicorn was cuddled affectionately against Kyri's wet face when she awoke with a start.’
      • ‘Here, in a different hemisphere, the acrid smell of firework smoke makes me think of cold nights, short days, cuddling up inside next to the heater.’
      • ‘When I came back to my room, I found Mandy and Lee cuddling up on the mattress.’
      • ‘The setting is conducive to cuddling up in the soft cushions and really making yourself at home.’
      • ‘James then hung up, smiling to himself as he cuddled up closer to Cheryl on the sofa.’
      • ‘She smiled at the fond feeling of his mind and cuddled in a little closer to him.’
      • ‘Quite oblivious to their presence was a pair of coyotes cuddled close together on the sand next to the cliff.’
      • ‘Willow woke up early, so we cuddled together on the sofa and watched Peter Pan.’
      • ‘I laughed, cuddling up next to him, wishing every inch of me could be even closer.’
      • ‘Jared cuddles closer, crushing his face against my neck, and mutters, ‘Thank you.’’
      • ‘Tyler turned his beautiful face to look over at Jane, who was not paying attention and turning the TV on, cuddling up with a pillow.’
      • ‘A grunt reached Kyle's ears, and he turned back, finding Josie cuddling closer to him, a satisfied smile on her face.’
      • ‘I just thought it was really cute that they would cuddle together like a happy little couple.’
      • ‘It was very warm indeed under the coats with the young elf cuddling up against him.’
      • ‘Aimee mumbled to herself about getting a lock for her door and pulled the comforter to her bed, cuddling up under it so that she could get back to sleep.’
      • ‘Eva's cuddling up against Jared as he absently puts his arm around her waist.’
      • ‘Nothing is cozier than cuddling up in front of a fire with some popcorn.’
    2. 1.2cuddle up toinformal [no object] Ingratiate oneself with:
      ‘they start cuddling up to the Liberals for support’
      • ‘The Mafia has never had problems about who is in power; it has always tried to cuddle up to those in charge because they are the ones who control the purse strings of public financing.’
      • ‘The Maharishi Foundation is the outfit that seeks to promote Transcendental Meditation, the practice once associated with the hairy old Indian guru that the Beatles cuddled up to in the 1960s.’
      • ‘Singapore then started cuddling up to Air New Zealand, while keeping an eye on Ansett, in which Air New Zealand was building an interest.’
      • ‘Nestlé's attempt to cuddle up to cat lovers goes hand in hand with its attempts to appear as an ethically driven company in other areas.’
      • ‘France cuddles up to Germany for decades on end, and rarely loses an opportunity to spite America.’
      • ‘As pressure on the party intensifies, it increasingly cuddles up to politically reactionary forces both at home and abroad.’
      • ‘One thing may be said with certainty of them, and that is they are not keen to cuddle up to Bulgaria's established political elite.’
      • ‘There may be disagreements about details, but they all want more private firms seizing parts of public services, and they all believe in ‘flexible labour’, cuddling up to business and holding down wages.’
      • ‘When it comes to cuddling up to the Americans, they pretty much stand alone.’
      • ‘But he lost because he is associated with the ‘pro-partnership’ agenda of working with the management and of cuddling up to New Labour over the war against Iraq and much else.’
      • ‘From the Russian perspective, cuddling up to Beijing has more to do with Russia's frosty relations with the West than the chill of the Russian winter.’
      • ‘Blair has spent a year cuddling up to Silvio Berlusconi, the media baron and Italian prime minister.’
      • ‘The major parties in Tasmania always cuddle up to big business.’
      • ‘Incompetent ministers cuddle up to their leaders, and lo and behold, they get back in on the list.’
      • ‘Under pressure, and in an attempt to cuddle up to this group in an election year, this was added at the last minute with none of the usual debate or consultation.’
      • ‘For the last few months, he has been cuddling up to Sun foes such as HP and Dell.’
      • ‘He cuddled up to his colleagues, begging for approval - he was obsequious, smart, slippery.’
      • ‘But after getting sweaty with punk rock, intimate with sonic terrorism and cuddling up to a retro surf sound, the trio have decided it's time to settle down.’
      • ‘Sam is famous for cuddling up to favoured hacks with a stream of tips.’
      • ‘I don't think the British Government will do this because the British Government are cuddling up to Sinn Fein.’
      nestle, curl up, settle, ensconce oneself, lie close to
      View synonyms

noun

  • A prolonged and affectionate hug:

    ‘he just wanted a comforting kiss and a cuddle’
    • ‘He gives the best cuddles and kisses, even when they're wriggly ones.’
    • ‘For decades, walkers have paused for a kiss and a cuddle at the kissing gate at Bridge End, Otley.’
    • ‘Be sure to pay tribute to your sweetheart with a kiss and a cuddle and a special treat.’
    • ‘I gave her a big kiss and a cuddle and then started getting ready for work.’
    • ‘It's easy to change the mood and stance of a French bulldog; just picking it up will engender a cuddle and kiss.’
    • ‘The revised plans for the block have been posted in an obscure place which only the people parking their cars for a quick kiss and a cuddle will see.’
    • ‘He is a very affectionate little boy who loves lots of kisses and cuddles.’
    • ‘He is very affectionate and loves to give and receive cuddles.’
    • ‘Actually, what she means is that she thinks I'm a sucker for a prolonged cuddle in my dozy state.’
    • ‘I remember her cuddles and kisses when I was a child run down with typhoid fever, while telling me over and over, ‘Mother loves you.’’
    • ‘He was still unmarried and although he had had brief flings with a few of the village girls none had ever amounted to more than a kiss and a cuddle.’
    • ‘I want romance and companionship and TLC and hugs and cuddles and kisses and someone who thinks about me when they're not with me, and misses me when we're apart.’
    • ‘His long and lonely quest for vengeance began with a kiss and a cuddle from his mother and a pocketful of bread, all that he had to sustain him through an epic journey the length of Afghanistan.’
    • ‘Big thanks to Beau, who doesn't read my blog anyway, for running out each time I left his house in the weekend to give me a kiss and a cuddle, even though he was busy with stuff inside.’
    • ‘She is inclined to wrap her flippers around their legs and give them an affectionate cuddle.’
    • ‘After a round of warm cuddles with my son I can't help but hurt like hell when I read things like this.’
    • ‘The star happily posed for photographs, laughed and joked with patients, thrilling some of them with kisses and cuddles.’
    • ‘When that time comes, I bundle her up, give her a cuddle & kiss, put her in her cot and her music on, and leave the room.’
    • ‘She turned round, planted me a huge kiss and then gave me a cuddle.’
    • ‘But I was dying for cuddles and kisses from my daughter, Chloe.’
    hug, embrace, bear hug
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Origin

Early 16th century (rare before the 18th century): of unknown origin.

Pronunciation

cuddle

/ˈkʌd(ə)l/