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[gang-gling] /ˈgæŋ glɪŋ/
awkwardly tall and spindly; lank and loosely built.
Also, gangly.
Origin of gangling
1800-10; akin to obsolete gangrel gangling person; cf. gang1


[gang-guh l] /ˈgæŋ gəl/
verb (used without object), gangled, gangling.
to move awkwardly or ungracefully:
A tall, stiff-jointed man gangled past.
First recorded in 1965-70; back formation from gangling Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for gangling
Historical Examples
  • The rest were children, from gangling adolescents to one mere infant in arms.

    Nightmare Planet Murray Leinster
  • Look a that gangling country jay, he muttered in Osgoods ear.

  • Long, lean and hollow cheeked, the term "gangling" fits him better than any other.

  • The horse wheeled, stepping as clumsily as a gangling yearling.

    The Garden of Eden Max Brand
  • Four years there did the work for the gangling, silent mountaineer.

    The Escape of Mr. Trimm Irvin S. Cobb
  • Long, gangling boy to start with, and a lean, stoop-shouldered man.

    A Modern Instance William Dean Howells
  • The tall Rogan teetered up to the prisoners on his gangling legs, and stared icily at them.

  • He was then a tall, "gangling" youth, six feet one in height, with yellow hair and blue eyes.

    The Story of the Outlaw Emerson Hough
  • The second of the three was a gangling kid who probably never gave me a second look, let alone a third.

    The Door Through Space Marion Zimmer Bradley
  • The gangling Texan was testing his rudder controls and flipping his ailerons with jerky movements of evident impatience.

    Aces Up Covington Clarke
British Dictionary definitions for gangling


tall, lanky, and awkward in movement
Word Origin
perhaps related to gangrel; see gang²
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for gangling

by 1812, a frequentative of gang in some sense involving looseness.

GANGLING. Tall, slender, delicate, generally applied to plants. Warw. [James O. Halliwell, "A Dictionary of Archaic and Provincial Words," 1846]

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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