- any large wading bird of the family Gruidae, characterized by long legs, bill, and neck and an elevated hind toe.
- (not used scientifically) any of various similar birds of other families, as the great blue heron.
- Machinery. a device for lifting and moving heavy weights in suspension.
- any of various similar devices, as a horizontally swinging arm by a fireplace, used for suspending pots over the fire.
- Movies, Television. a vehicle having a long boom on which a camera can be mounted for taking shots from high angles.
- Nautical. any of a number of supports for a boat or spare spar on the deck or at the side of a vessel.
- (initial capital letter) Astronomy. the constellation Grus.
- to hoist, lower, or move by or as by a crane.
- to stretch (the neck) as a crane does.
- to stretch out one's neck, especially to see better.
- to hesitate at danger, difficulty, etc.
Origin of crane
Examples from the Web for craning
Kirkwood looked back, craning his neck round the side of the cab.The Black Bag
Louis Joseph Vance
Exclamations from the crowd, craning necks, peering eyes, murmurs.A Nest of Spies
There was a bustle among the audience, a sudden rising, a craning of necks.The Film of Fear
There was a silence of expectancy, and a turning of heads, a craning of necks.Scaramouche
Alderson, who had been craning out of the door, drew back his head to speak.The Pirate of Panama
William MacLeod Raine
- any large long-necked long-legged wading bird of the family Gruidae, inhabiting marshes and plains in most parts of the world except South America, New Zealand, and Indonesia: order GruiformesSee also demoiselle (def. 1), whooping crane
- (not in ornithological use) any similar bird, such as a heron
- a device for lifting and moving heavy objects, typically consisting of a moving boom, beam, or gantry from which lifting gear is suspendedSee also gantry
- films a large trolley carrying a boom, on the end of which is mounted a camera
- (tr) to lift or move (an object) by or as if by a crane
- to stretch out (esp the neck), as to see over other people's heads
- (intr) (of a horse) to pull up short before a jump
- (Harold) Hart. 1899–1932, US poet; author of The Bridge (1930)
- Stephen. 1871–1900, US novelist and short-story writer, noted particularly for his novel The Red Badge of Courage (1895)
- Walter. 1845–1915, British painter, illustrator of children's books, and designer of textiles and wallpaper
Word Origin and History for craning
Old English cran "large wading bird," common Germanic (cf. Old Saxon krano, Old High German krano, German Kranich, and, with unexplained change of consonant, Old Norse trani), from PIE *gere- (cf. Greek geranos, Latin grus, Welsh garan, Lithuanian garnys "heron, stork"), perhaps echoic of its cry. Metaphoric use for "machine with a long arm" is first attested late 13c. (a sense also in equivalent words in German and Greek).
"to stretch (the neck)," 1799, from crane (n.). Related: Craned; craning.