- Veterinary Pathology. a disease of the bones in sheep and cattle that causes pain in walking, resulting from a deficiency of phosphorus in the diet.
Origin of creeps
- to move slowly with the body close to the ground, as a reptile or an insect, or a person on hands and knees.
- to approach slowly, imperceptibly, or stealthily (often followed by up): We crept up and peeked over the wall.
- to move or advance slowly or gradually: The automobile crept up the hill. Time just seems to creep along on these hot summer days.
- to sneak up behind someone or without someone's knowledge (usually followed by up on): The prisoners crept up on the guard and knocked him out.
- to enter or become evident inconspicuously, gradually, or insidiously (often followed by in or into:) The writer's personal bias occasionally creeps into the account.
- to move or behave timidly or servilely.
- to grow along the ground, a wall, etc., as a plant.
- to advance or develop gradually so as to infringe on or supplant something else.
- to flirt with or make persistent sexual advances toward someone (often followed by on): He creeps on all the women he meets.
- to cheat on one’s sexual partner: He caught his wife creepin' with the guy who lives next-door.
- Slang. to follow someone persistently or stealthily, as on a social media website (often followed by on): He spends a lot of time creeping on her Facebook profile.
- Slang. to suddenly intrude into someone’s photograph as it is being taken: Who’s that creeping in the background of the picture?
- to slip, slide, or shift gradually; become displaced.
- (of a metal object) to become deformed, as under continuous loads or at high temperatures.
- Nautical. to grapple (usually followed by for): The ships crept for their anchor chains.
- Slang. to follow persistently or stealthily, especially online: I’ve been creeping her blog and found some great recipes.
- Archaic. to creep along or over.
- an act or instance of creeping: It seems as if time has slowed to a creep.
- Slang. an obnoxious, disturbingly eccentric, deviant, or painfully introverted person.
- Slang. an intelligence or counterintelligence agent; spy.
- Slang. creeper(def 10).
- a gradual or inconspicuous increase, advance, change, or development: Avoid jargon creep in your writing. We are seeing the steady creep of consumerism.
- the gradual movement downhill of loose soil, rock, gravel, etc.; solifluction.
- the slow deformation of solid rock resulting from constant stress applied over long periods.
- Mechanics. the gradual, permanent deformation of a body produced by a continued application of heat or stress.
- a grappling iron; grapnel.
- Firearms. the slack in a trigger mechanism before it releases the firing pin.
- creep feeder.
- the creeps, Informal. a sensation of horror, fear, disgust, etc., suggestive of the feeling induced by something crawling over the skin: That horror movie gave me the creeps.
- make one's flesh creep, to be frightening or repellent; cause one to experience uneasiness: The eerie stories made our flesh creep.
Origin of creep
SynonymsSee more synonyms for creep on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for creeps
From creeps and trolls to hoaxes and hackers, these are the things that made us want to say sayonara to the Interwebs this year.10 Things That Made Us Want to Turn Off the Internet Forever in 2014
The Daily Beast
December 15, 2014
There is a slightly more political bent to the movies, and we all have a political point of view, and it creeps into the films.
She called father and son The Creeps, or just Them, as in “I want to see them brought out feet first.”The Ballad of Johnny France
Richard Ben Cramer
January 12, 2014
Of course, Creekmore knew the tales about the Killer, and frankly, the house gave him the creeps.The Strange and Mysterious Death of Mrs. Jerry Lee Lewis
Richard Ben Cramer
January 11, 2014
And nobody fears the spotlight as creeps who would be shown for what they really are.FBI Sting Rescues 105 Kids, Nabs 159 Pimps—But What About the Johns?
July 30, 2013
Weird places some of them, too—gives me the creeps to think of them sometimes!The Avenger
E. Phillips Oppenheim
It's foolish, but that still and the liquor gives me the creeps.L'Assommoir
I hide the box of bug powder when I hear two other creeps come running.Operation Earthworm
These men gave him the creeps, innocent of all guilt though he was.The Spoilers of the Valley
It gave me the creeps, and that is a sensation that does not bother me very much these days.Frontier Boys in Frisco
- the creeps informal a feeling of fear, repulsion, disgust, etc
- to crawl with the body near to or touching the ground
- to move slowly, quietly, or cautiously
- to act in a servile way; fawn; cringe
- to move or slip out of place, as from pressure or wear
- (of plants) to grow along the ground or over rocks, producing roots, suckers, or tendrils at intervals
- (of a body or substance) to become permanently deformed as a result of an applied stress, often when combined with heating
- to develop graduallycreeping unrest
- to have the sensation of something crawling over the skin
- (of metals) to undergo slow plastic deformation
- the act of creeping or a creeping movement
- slang a person considered to be obnoxious or servile
- the continuous permanent deformation of a body or substance as a result of stress or heat
- geology the gradual downwards movement of loose rock material, soil, etc, on a slope
- a slow relative movement of two adjacent parts, structural components, etc
- slow plastic deformation of metals
Word Origin and History for creeps
Old English creopan "to creep" (class II strong verb; past tense creap, past participle cropen), from Proto-Germanic *kreupanan (cf. Old Frisian kriapa, Middle Dutch crupen, Old Norse krjupa "to creep"), from PIE root *greug-. Related: Crept; creeping.
"a creeping motion," 1818, from creep (v.). Meaning "despicable person" is 1935, American English slang, perhaps from earlier sense of "sneak thief" (1914). Creeper "a gilded rascal" is recorded from c.1600, and the word also was used of certain classes of thieves, especially those who robbed customers in brothels. The creeps "a feeling of dread or revulsion" first attested 1849, in Dickens.
Idioms and Phrases with creeps
In addition to the idiom beginning with creep
- creep up on
- make one's flesh creep
- the creeps