verb (used without object)

to crouch, as in fear or shame.

Nearby words

  1. cowcatcher,
  2. cowden's disease,
  3. cowdrey,
  4. cowell,
  5. cowell, henry dixon,
  6. cowes,
  7. cowfeteria,
  8. cowfish,
  9. cowflop,
  10. cowgirl

Origin of cower

1250–1300; Middle English couren; cognate with Norwegian, Swedish kūra, Middle Low German kūren, German kauern

Related formscow·er·ing·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cower

British Dictionary definitions for cower



(intr) to crouch or cringe, as in fear

Word Origin for cower

C13: from Middle Low German kūren to lie in wait; related to Swedish kura to lie in wait, Danish kure to squat

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

Word Origin and History for cower



c.1300, probably from Middle Low German *kuren "lie in wait" (Modern German kauern), or similar Scandinavian words meaning "to squat" and "to doze" (e.g. Old Norse kura, Danish, Norwegian kure, Swedish kura). Thus unrelated to coward. Related: Cowered; cowering.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper