November 25, 2012
quibble (verb)
\KWIB-ul\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
1 : to talk about unimportant things rather than the real point2 : to find fault or argue over unimportant points
How do you use it?
We wasted so much time quibbling over the rules that when we finally agreed there was no time left to play the game.
Are you a word wiz?

Which sentence do you think uses the verb "quibble" correctly?

Don't quibble with B. Sentence A correctly uses "quibble" as a verb, but neither meaning of "quibble" fits here. The word "scribble" would work instead. Sentence C also uses "quibble" as a verb. But like A, it makes no sense. The students might have "agreed" on a favorite book. In sentence D, "quibble" is used as a noun. It's true that there is a noun "quibble." It means "a statement that deals with a minor matter and not the real point under discussion" and "a minor objection or criticism." Although D uses the noun correctly, it can't be the right choice since we were looking for the verb.
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