Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

  

English definition of “whittle sth down”

whittle sth down

phrasal verb with whittle     /ˈwɪt.l̩/ US  /ˈwɪt̬-/ verb [T]
to gradually reduce the size of something or the number of people in a group: We had 80 applicants for the job, but we've whittled them down to six.Becoming and making smaller or lessBecoming and making less strong
(Definition of whittle sth down from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
Focus on the pronunciation of whittle sth down

Translations of “whittle sth down”

Word of the Day

limber up

to do gentle exercises to stretch the muscles in order to prepare the body for more active physical exercise

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More