Quibble



[kwib-uh l] /ˈkwɪb əl/

noun
1.
an instance of the use of ambiguous, prevaricating, or irrelevant language or arguments to evade a point at issue.
2.
the general use of such arguments.
3.
petty or carping criticism; a minor objection.
verb (used without object), quibbled, quibbling.
4.
to equivocate.
5.
to carp; cavil.
/ˈkwɪbəl/
verb (intransitive)
1.
to make trivial objections; prevaricate
2.
(archaic) to play on words; pun
noun
3.
a trivial objection or equivocation, esp one used to avoid an issue
4.
(archaic) a pun
n.

1610s, “a pun, a play on words,” probably a diminutive of obsolete quib “evasion of point at issue,” based on an overuse of Latin quibus? in legal jargon, which supposedly gave it the association with trivial argument. Meaning “equivocation, evasion of the point” is attested from 1660s.
v.

“equivocate, evade the point, turn from the point in question or the plain truth,” 1650s, from quibble (n.). Earlier “to pun” (1620s). Related: Quibbled; quibbling.

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