There is liquid(water/milk/flavoured soda/fruit juice) in a bottle and I want to drink it.

I can consume it in such a manner that my mouth touches the mouth of the bottle, as "I drank the juice by putting the bottle to my mouth."


Without touching the mouth of the bottle, is it dribbling? as "I dribbled the juice out of/from the bottle."

Google says:(of a liquid) fall slowly in drops or a thin stream.

EDIT: (20 Dec 2016, 10:33 AM IST) why I am asking this question:

In a British comedy (My Family) in one of the episodes there is a scene where the brother (Nick) has drank some milk from the bottle in the fridge, the sister (Jenny) unaware of this drinks it too, later on when she realises that the brother drank it before her and that he is stupid, she asks him something like (I don't remember the exact words) "did you ---- or did you ----?" and in this line I heard the word dribble.

May be she asked exactly what the word dribble means and that is "did the brother dribble some milk from his mouth back into the bottle?", because pouring liquid into the mouth from a distance is not common in U.K.

I am from India and pouring water from a distance into your mouth is very common and I don't think there is one word for this but the the group of words used to describe it literally translated are "drank it from above", here above is used as the glass of water is above/over your mouth.

  • 3
    I googled and found one person describing this using the verb pour. Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 8:34
  • Very similar answers were previously posted on EL&U: How do I politely say I have used my mouth while drinking water from a bottle?
    – Mari-Lou A
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 15:18
  • Just out of curiosity, does your native language have a simple way of expressing this difference? There isn't really a simple way to do it in English.
    – stangdon
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 15:25
  • @stangdon, pls see the edit, thanx
    – Vikram
    Commented Dec 20, 2016 at 5:13
  • Thanks, Vikram. I think I found the episode script here. The character says "Did you pour it from a distance or did you dribble it back?" That's understandable but not exactly what I would call a common phrasing. In fact, I think the reason that the sentence is so wordy is that we don't have a standard way of referring to the action of drinking directly from the bottle. Dribble is kind of insulting, implying that her brother was sort of sloppily spilling the milk onto his face.
    – stangdon
    Commented Dec 20, 2016 at 23:21

2 Answers 2


I don't think there's a single word that describes drinking particularly from the bottle, as opposed to any other container. If it's something you usually drink from a glass (like milk, or a large bottle of juice), and you want to emphasize you didn't, you can say you drank it straight from the bottle.

Other than that, there's a lot of words meaning "to drink" that may or may not be useful to you.

If you drank the entire bottle quickly, you can say you downed the bottle.

If you drank slowly and continuously, you sipped on the bottle. (or even nursed the bottle if you want to emphasize the slowness).

Pouring the bottle into your mouth also implies you drank it relatively fast, and dribbling it into your mouth - the opposite (though I'd say the latter is rather uncommon usage). Keep in mind that you need to say where you poured our dribbled the bottle in order to be understood correctly.

  • 2
    ... and if you drink noisily, you slurp it. dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/slurp. You could also use suck for a plastic bottle that collapses as you drink. dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/suck
    – JavaLatte
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 9:01
  • 1
    Dribbling is usually not used for drinking but for other things. You can dribble from your mouth, for example (also known as drooling), and you can dribble a few drops of oil onto a pizza.
    – Muzer
    Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 12:18
  • Sipping and nursing are not continuous drinking. They are small, individual, discrete drinks taken repeatedly over some period of time. Contrast with quaffing or chugging, which are continuous. Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 15:20
  • @EsotericScreenName yes, I mean drinking more in the general sense than the actual flow of liquid between container and digestive tract :) If you've been "drinking for the entire night", it doesn't mean you hadn't put a bottle down for a split second. Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 15:29
  • @Maciej it's incorrect in this context, because you're discussing the actual act of putting liquid into your mouth. Commented Dec 19, 2016 at 15:33

I've often heard it referred to as waterfalling.

Used like: "I drank from your water bottle, but don't worry I waterfalled it."

It's slang and most likely regional but that's the only single word I've heard used to describe drinking from a bottle without touching it to your lips.

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