• (UK) IPA(key): /dɹɪv.əl/
  • (file)
  • Hyphenation: driv‧el
  • Rhymes: -ɪvəl

Etymology 1Edit

From Middle English drivelen, drevelen, from Old English dreflian (to drivel, slobber, slaver), from Proto-Germanic *drablijaną, from Proto-Indo-European *dʰerebʰ- (cloudy, turbid; yeast).


drivel (countable and uncountable, plural drivels)

  1. senseless talk; nonsense
    • 2020 August 26, Nigel Harris, “Comment Special: Catastrophe at Carmont”, in Rail, page 4:
      A ray of light amid all this nonsense was Gwyn Topham's piece in the Guardian, which was timely, measured, accurate and of appropriate tone. That this single report stood out so clearly as an exemplar is a scathing comment in itself on the volumes of drivel surrounding it.
  2. saliva, drool
  3. (obsolete) A fool; an idiot.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Sir Philip Sidney to this entry?)


drivel (third-person singular simple present drivels, present participle (US) driveling or drivelling, simple past and past participle (US) driveled or drivelled)

  1. To have saliva drip from the mouth; to drool.
  2. To talk nonsense; to talk senselessly; to drool.
  3. To be weak or foolish; to dote.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Dryden to this entry?)
The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout § Translations.

Etymology 2Edit

Compare Old Dutch drevel, "a scullion".


drivel (plural drivels)

  1. (obsolete) A servant; a drudge.
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Huloet to this entry?)
    (Can we find and add a quotation of Edmund Spenser to this entry?)