Definition of fondle in English:



  • Stroke or caress lovingly or erotically.

    ‘the dog came over to have his ears fondled’
    ‘charges that he fondled a patient during an examination’
    • ‘He sits there on the sofa, slowly turning the pages, fondling each and every one.’
    • ‘Throughout, he narrows his eyes behind bushy eyebrows and slips coins from hand to hand, as if fondling a rosary.’
    • ‘After she told him she pierced her belly, Dueck began fondling her.’
    • ‘He may need counselling after they kept fondling him throughout the fourth quarter.’
    • ‘I looked up to see one of the boys, he was fondling me, touching me and I tried to scream.’
    • ‘In the print version, Anoushka is sitting beside her famous father, fondling the goat.’
    • ‘Eriksson was quick to signal his intentions by fondling her at the table, she said.’
    • ‘He was accused of fondling the girl while posing for a photo with her and her mother.’
    • ‘He looked at them and fondled their strings lovingly.’
    • ‘He stops in front of the row of Silliscups rip-offs and begins fondling each one, seemingly to judge the sturdiness of the plastic.’
    • ‘This can include cuddling, fondling, stroking, massaging and kissing.’
    • ‘I also saw one elderly couple fondling the power tools and speaking in a language consisting solely of consonants and facial expressions.’
    • ‘In the affidavit, Imre describes she and the boy kissing and fondling one another.’
    • ‘She was with a man who seemed as oblivious to public decency as she was, kissing and fondling her as they walked.’
    • ‘He chuckled and fondled his sword handle lovingly.’
    • ‘Calling her over, Justine stroked her sleek face and fondled her mane.’
    • ‘Soviet-style posters of happy storm troopers and peasant girls fondling potent sheaves fade and curl in the hot wind.’
    • ‘He fondled her soft ears and, for just a moment, laid his cheek against her neck.’
    • ‘She fondled his hair lovingly and made her way to Jessica's room.’
    • ‘Despite this, I can often be found salivating over a Viking catalogue or fondling the gorgeous specimens on sale in Paperchase.’
    caress, stroke, pat, pet, pull, finger, touch, tickle, twiddle, play with, massage, knead
    maul, molest
    paw, grope, feel up, touch up, cop a feel of
    View synonyms


  • An act of fondling.

    • ‘A penniless Essex University student is auctioning a fondle of her breasts on E-bay to get her through the year.’
    • ‘One person's affectionate pat is another's lascivious fondle.’
    • ‘Chocolate responds to the warmth of your mouth and each fondle of your tongue, softly, slinkily and slowly it melts.’


Late 17th century (in the sense pamper): back-formation from obsolete fondling much-loved or petted person from fond + -ling.