- moving or going about clumsily or hesitantly; stumbling.
- showing or reflecting a desire to understand, especially something that proves puzzling: a groping scrutiny; a groping expression.
Origin of groping
- to feel about with the hands; feel one's way: I had to grope around in the darkness before I found the light switch.
- to search blindly or uncertainly: He seemed to be groping for an answer to the question.
- to seek by or as if by groping: to grope one's way up the dark stairs.
- to touch or handle (someone) for sexual pleasure.
- an act or instance of groping.
- Slang. an act or instance of sexually fondling another person.
Origin of grope
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for groping
“He was groping for some way to phrase the emotions that usually were kept securely locked up,” said Eleanor.The Stacks: The Day Lou Gehrig Delivered Baseball’s Gettysburg Address
July 4, 2014
The U.S. Open of Surfing dissolved into vandalism, looting, and groping.U.S. Open of Surfing Turns Into Riot
July 31, 2013
Instead, Republicans are groping for answers as the slow march toward the fiscal cliff leaves them ever more divided.Why the Fiscal Cliff Is Causing a Nervous Breakdown on the Right
December 11, 2012
They are groping for some modulation, some way to translate complicated moral intuitions into rules a society can live by.How to End the Abortion Wars
August 20, 2012
I understand that groping our way toward a shared justice will never be easy, nor will it be perfect.Palestinian Children
Emily L. Hauser
June 29, 2012
Dorcas went to her bedroom, touching the walls, on the way, with her groping hands.Meadow Grass
I caught at it, and, groping up the stairs, gained my high window-seat.
Do you suppose I'd want him to just go 'groping around' like he was telling you?Alice Adams
Luckily, the old Frenchman was groping his way next the other wall.The Inn at the Red Oak
In college he had appealed to me because there I was groping and had found nothing.The Harbor
- (intr usually foll by for) to feel or search about uncertainly (for something) with the hands
- (intr; usually foll by for or after) to search uncertainly or with difficulty (for a solution, answer, etc)
- (tr) to find or make (one's way) by groping
- (tr) slang to feel or fondle the body of (someone) for sexual gratification
- the act of groping
Word Origin and History for groping
Old English grapian "to feel about (as one blind or in darkness)," originally "lay hold of, seize, touch, attain," related to gripan "grasp at" (see gripe). Figurative sense is from early 14c. Indecent sense (marked as "obsolete" in OED) is from c.1200. Related: Groped; groping. The noun is Old English grap.