- to humble oneself or act in an abject manner, as in great fear or utter servility.
- to lie or crawl with the face downward and the body prostrate, especially in abject humility, fear, etc.
- to take pleasure in mean or base things.
Origin of grovel
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for groveller
A classic cannot reveal itself to a groveller or to a critic.The Lost Art of Reading
Gerald Stanley Lee
From the evils of this life the groveller in the mud sees no escape.Browning and Dogma
Ethel M. Naish
Your brute, your beast, your groveller in ditches, is not nearly so dangerous.Crowded Out! and Other Sketches
Susie F. Harrison
Oh shade of Wordsworth, to think that so unutterable a grub and groveller as I am should dare call anything of thine Stodgy!The Adventures of Elizabeth in Rgen
Elizabeth von Arnim
- to humble or abase oneself, as in making apologies or showing respect
- to lie or crawl face downwards, as in fear or humility
- (often foll by in) to indulge or take pleasure (in sensuality or vice)
Word Origin and History for groveller
1590s, Shakespearian back-formation of groveling (Middle English), regarded as a present participle but really an adverb, from Old Norse grufe "prone" + obsolete adverbial suffix -ling (which survives also as the -long in headlong, sidelong); first element from Old Norse a grufu "on proneness." Perhaps related to creep. Related: Groveled; grovelled; groveling; grovelling.