verb (used without object)
to move in a prone position with the body resting on or close to the ground, as a worm or caterpillar, or on the hands and knees, as a young child.
(of plants or vines) to extend tendrils; creep.
to move or progress slowly or laboriously:
The line of cars crawled behind the slow-moving truck. The work just crawled until we got the new machines.
to behave in a remorseful, abject, or cringing manner:
Don’t come crawling back to me asking for favors.
to be, or feel as if, overrun with crawling things:
The hut crawled with lizards and insects.
Ceramics. (of a glaze) to spread unevenly over the surface of a piece.
(of paint) to raise or contract because of an imperfect bond with the underlying surface.
verb (used with object)
to visit or frequent a series of (especially bars):
to crawl the neighborhood pubs.
act of crawling; a slow, crawling motion.
a slow pace or rate of progress:
Traffic slowed to a crawl.
Swimming. a stroke in a prone position, characterized by alternate overarm movements combined with the flutter kick.
Television, Movies. titles that slowly move across a screen, providing information.
a defect in freshly applied paint or varnish characterized by bare patches and ridging
to move slowly, either by dragging the body along the ground or on the hands and knees
to proceed or move along very slowly or laboriously: the traffic crawled along the road
to act or behave in a servile manner; fawn; cringe
to be or feel as if overrun by something unpleasant, esp crawling creatures: the pile of refuse crawled with insects
(of insects, worms, snakes, etc) to move with the body close to the ground
to swim the crawl
a slow creeping pace or motion
(swimming) Also called Australian crawl, front crawl. a stroke in which the feet are kicked like paddles while the arms reach forward and pull back through the water
an enclosure in shallow, coastal water for fish, lobsters, etc
c.1200, creulen, from a Scandinavian source, perhaps Old Norse krafla “to claw (one’s way),” from the same root as crab (n.1). If there was an Old English *craflian, it has not been recorded. Related: Crawled; crawling.
1818, from crawl (v.); in the swimming sense from 1903, the stroke developed by Frederick Cavill, well-known English swimmer who emigrated to Australia and modified the standard stroke of the day after observing South Seas islanders. So called because the swimmer’s motion in the water resembles crawling.
- Crawling horror
jargon Ancient crufty hardware or software that is kept obstinately alive by forces beyond the control of the hackers at a site. Like dusty deck or gonkulator, but connotes that the thing described is not just an irritation but an active menace to health and sanity. “Mostly we code new stuff in C, but they […]
- Crawling peg
noun 1. a method of stabilizing exchange rates, prices, etc, by maintaining a fixed level for a specified period or until the level has persisted at an upper or lower limit for a specified period and then permitting a predetermined incremental rise or fall
- Crawl out of the woodwork
verb phrase To appear, materialize, interfere, etc, as or like something very loathsome: A lot of them are weirdos who just crawled out of the woodwork/ Any time there’s a juicy scandal a lot of creeps come out of the woodwork [1960s+; fr the notion that worms, spiders, maggoty creatures, rats, etc, dwell in hidden […]
[krawl-speys] /ˈkrɔlˌspeɪs/ noun 1. (in a building) an area accessible by , having a clearance less than human height, for access to plumbing or wiring, storage, etc.