Etymology
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footle (v.)

"to trifle," 1892, from dialectal footer "to trifle," footy "mean, paltry" (1752), perhaps from French se foutre "to care nothing," from Old French futer "to copulate with," from Latin futuere "have sex with (a woman)," originally "to strike, thrust" (which is perhaps from PIE root *bhau- "to strike"). But OED derives the English dialect words from foughty (c. 1600), from Dutch vochtig or Danish fugtig "damp, musty;" related to fog (n.).

updated on May 28, 2017

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Definitions of footle from WordNet

footle (v.)
be about;
Synonyms: loiter / lounge / lollygag / loaf / lallygag / hang around / mess about / tarry / linger / lurk / mill about / mill around
footle (v.)
act foolishly, as by talking nonsense;
From wordnet.princeton.edu, not affiliated with etymonline.