fiddle

\ \ [OE] Like its distant cousin violin, fiddle comes ultimately from the name of a Roman goddess of joy and victory. This was Vītula, who probably originated among the pre-Roman Sabine people of the Italian peninsula. A Latin verb was coined from her name, vītulārī, meaning ‘hold joyful celebrations’, which in post-classical times produced the noun vītulastringed instrument, originally as played at such festivals’. In the Romance languages this went on to give viola, violin, etc, but prehistoric West and North Germanic borrowed it as *fithulōn, whence German fiedel, Dutch vedel, and English fiddle. In English, the word has remained in use for the instrument which has developed into the modern violin, but since the 16th century it has gradually been replaced as the main term by violin, and it is now only a colloquial or dialectal alternative. The sense ‘swindle’ originated in the USA in the mid-to-late 19th century.
\ \ Cf.VIOLIN

Word origins - 2ed. . 2005.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • fiddle — fid‧dle [ˈfɪdl] verb [transitive] informal to give false information about something in order to avoid paying money, or to get extra money: • It would be naive to think that staff never fiddle their expenses. • Auditors ensure that employers or… …   Financial and business terms

  • Fiddle — Saltar a navegación, búsqueda El término Fiddle, hace referencia a cualquier instrumento musical de cuerda que se hace sonar con arco, lo que incluye al violín. Se trata de un término coloquial para aquellos instrumentos utilizados por músicos en …   Wikipedia Español

  • Fiddle — Fid dle (f[i^]d d l), n. [OE. fidele, fithele, AS. fi[eth]ele; akin to D. vedel, OHG. fidula, G. fiedel, Icel. fi[eth]la, and perh. to E. viol. Cf. {Viol}.] 1. (Mus.) A stringed instrument of music played with a bow; a violin; a kit. [1913… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Fiddle — est un mot anglais qui signifie « violon », mais avec une connotation plus populaire que violin (qui est le terme anglais usuel pour désigner un violon, en particulier un violon de musique classique). Il s agit de l instrument de celui… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • fiddle — ► NOUN 1) informal a violin. 2) informal, chiefly Brit. an act of fraud or cheating. 3) informal an unnecessarily intricate or awkward task. ► VERB informal 1) touch or fidget with something restlessly or nervously. 2) chiefly Brit. falsify… …   English terms dictionary

  • fiddle — [fid′ l] n. [ME fithele < OE < VL * vitula < L vitulari, to rejoice: vi (< IE * woi , wi , outcry > OE wi, Gr ia) + ? base of tollere, to raise, exalt] 1. Informal any stringed instrument played with a bow, esp. the violin ☆ 2.… …   English World dictionary

  • Fiddle — Fid dle, v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Fiddled}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Fiddling}.] 1. To play on a fiddle. [1913 Webster] Themistocles . . . said he could not fiddle, but he could make a small town a great city. Bacon. [1913 Webster] 2. To keep the hands and… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Fiddle — Fid dle, v. t. To play (a tune) on a fiddle. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Fiddle —   [englisch, fɪdl], Violine …   Universal-Lexikon

  • fiddle — англ. [фидл] Fidel, Fiedel нем. [фи/дэль] fidula лат. [фи/дула] фидель, старин. смычковый инструм …   Словарь иностранных музыкальных терминов

  • fiddle — [v] mess with, tinker dabble, doodle, feel, fidget, finger, fool, handle, interfere, mess, mess around*, monkey*, play, potter, puddle, putter, tamper, touch, toy, trifle, twiddle; concepts 87,291 …   New thesaurus

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.