Etymology
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whittle (v.)

1550s, "to cut thin shavings from (something) with a knife," from Middle English whittel "a knife," especially a large one (c. 1400), variant of thwittle (late 14c.), from Old English þwitan "to cut," from Proto-Germanic *thwit- (source also of Old Norse þveita "to hew"), from PIE root *twei- "to agitate, shake, toss" (see seismo-). Figurative sense is attested from 1746. Related: Whittled; whittling.

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Definitions of whittle
1
whittle (v.)
cut small bits or pare shavings from;
whittle a piece of wood
Synonyms: pare
2
Whittle (n.)
English aeronautical engineer who invented the jet aircraft engine (1907-1996);
Synonyms: Frank Whittle / Sir Frank Whittle
From wordnet.princeton.edu