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Cry for

Also, cry out for; have a crying need for. Be in urgent need of, as in This wall cries for a second coat of paint, or This car is crying out for a good washing, or There is a crying need for order in this house. The figurative use of cry for, literally meaning “implore” or “weep for,” dates from the late 1500s, as does the use of crying for “demanding attention.” The first variant, alluding to actually shouting out one’s needs or desires, dates from the second half of the 1800s.


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  • Crying

    [krahy-ing] /ˈkraɪ ɪŋ/ adjective 1. demanding attention or remedy; critical; severe: a crying evil. 2. reprehensible; odious; notorious: a crying shame. [krahy] /kraɪ/ verb (used without object), cried, crying. 1. to utter inarticulate sounds, especially of lamentation, grief, or suffering, usually with tears. 2. to weep; shed tears, with or without sound. 3. to call […]

  • Crying jag

    noun phrase A fit of uncontrollable weeping, often accompanying drunkenness: Florence got regular crying jags, and the men sought to cheer and comfort her (1904+)

  • Crying towel

    A figurative towel for wiping the tears of a self-pitying individual. For example, So you didn’t make the first team? Get out the crying towel. This expression is always used sarcastically. [ ; 1920s ]

  • Crymo-

    crymo- pref. Cold: crymotherapy.

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