niggling


niggling

adjective

  1. petty; trivial; inconsequential: to quibble about a niggling difference in terminology.
  2. demanding too much care, attention, time, etc.: niggling chores about the house.

verb (used without object), nig·gled, nig·gling.

  1. to criticize, especially constantly or repeatedly, in a peevish or petty way; carp: to niggle about the fine points of interpretation; preferring to niggle rather than take steps to correct a situation.
  2. to spend too much time and effort on inconsequential details: It’s difficult to be meticulous and not niggle.
  3. to work ineffectively; trifle: to niggle with an uninteresting task.

adjective

  1. petty
  2. fussy
  3. irritating
  4. requiring painstaking work
  5. persistently troublinga niggling back pain

noun

  1. an act or instance of niggling

verb

  1. (intr) to find fault continually
  2. (intr) to be preoccupied with details; fuss
  3. (tr) to irritate; worry

noun

  1. a slight or trivial objection or complaint
  2. a slight feeling as of misgiving, uncertainty, etc
v.

1590s (implied in niggling), possibly from a Scandinavian source (cf. Norwegian dialectal nigla “be busy with trifles”), perhaps related to source of niggard. Related: Niggled; niggling; niggler.

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