- to rove or go about stealthily, as in search of prey, something to steal, etc.
- to rove over or through in search of what may be found: The cat prowled the alleys in search of food.
- act of prowling.
- on the prowl, in the act of prowling; searching stealthily: The cat is on the prowl for mice.
Origin of prowl
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for prowl
Cooke describes Joplin as being “always on the prowl and vocal about it.”Janis Joplin’s Kozmic Blues
November 8, 2014
Is John Galliano on the prowl for redemption against his former employer, LVMH?Allison Williams Nabs First Endorsement; Raf Simons's Dior Already a Hit
The Fashion Beast Team
February 4, 2013
Who, when on the prowl at a bar, likes to say, “Oh, I work in the EOB”?President Obama Eyes New Oval Office While the White House Undergoes Renovations
February 3, 2013
This was a fundraiser for the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, Calif., and they were on the prowl.Richard Nixon’s 100th Birthday Draws Kissinger & Others to Schmaltzy Bash
January 10, 2013
“You have sexual predators that are on the prowl,” she said.Lackland Rape Scandal Shines Spotlight On Military Failure
July 17, 2012
Now to find a lodgment for the night, and then to prowl round for a house.
Sebright, bent double, circled slowly on a prowl of minute inspection.Romance
Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer
They continued to prowl round the tent, hunger-mad and desperate.The Trail of '98
Robert W. Service
"Let's prowl around and see what other Hallowe'eners are doing," proposed Dick.The Grammar School Boys of Gridley
H. Irving Hancock
When we returned from that prowl into the forest, we found the inn dark.
- (when intr, often foll by around or about) to move stealthily around (a place) as if in search of prey or plunder
- the act of prowling
- on the prowl
- moving around stealthily
- zealously pursuing members of the opposite sex
Word Origin and History for prowl
late 14c., prollen, "move about in search of something," of unknown origin, with no known cognates. Spelling with -w- is from 1500s (cf. bowl), but pronounced "prôll" till late 18c. Meaning "go stealthily in search of prey" is first recorded 1580s. Related: Prowled; prowling. The noun, in on the prowl, is attested from 1803.