noun, Informal.
a person who behaves in a helpless and dependent manner in relationships with others.
(US & Canadian, informal) a woman who displays excessive emotional dependence on a man
An overly dependent person, as in A clinging vine since her marriage, she’s never made a decision on her own. Nearly always applied to a woman (or wife), this metaphor for a climbing plant today criticizes dependency rather than, as in former times, praising the vine’s fruitfulness.


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  • Clingmans-dome

    [kling-muh nz] /ˈklɪŋ mənz/ noun 1. a mountain on the border between North Carolina and Tennessee: the highest peak in the Great Smoky Mountains. 6642 feet (2024 meters).

  • Cling-peach

    noun 1. a clingstone peach.

  • Clingstone

    [kling-stohn] /ˈklɪŋˌstoʊn/ adjective 1. having a pit to which the pulp adheres closely, as certain peaches and plums. noun 2. a clingstone peach. /ˈklɪŋˌstəʊn/ noun 1. Compare freestone (sense 2) n. “fruit having the pulp adhering firmly to the stone,” 1722, from cling (v.) + stone (n.). Also as an adjective.

  • Clingy

    [kling-ee] /ˈklɪŋ i/ adjective, clingier, clingiest. 1. apt to ; adhesive or tenacious: a clingy fabric. adj. 1680s, of things, from cling + -y (2). Of persons (especially children) from 1969, though the image of a “clingy vine” in a relationship goes back to 1896. Related: Clinginess.

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