- to shrink, bend, or crouch, especially in fear or servility; cower.
- to fawn.
- servile or fawning deference.
Origin of cringe
Examples from the Web for cringing
The new muskel-Juden replaces the weak, cringing land-less Jew.Jonathan Pollard Means Israeli-American Squabbling Instead of Israeli-Palestinian Negotiation
July 26, 2013
But cheering for the message of self-empowerment quickly shifted to cringing.11 Worst Songs of the Summer of All Time
June 4, 2013
In memory, he was reviled as a servile race traitor, a cringing sycophant to white wealth and power.David's Book Club: Up From History
February 2, 2013
You could almost hear Kagan, Breyer and Ginsburg cringing every time she spoke.Justice Roberts Shines
March 28, 2012
The video has 1.5 million views on YouTube and became an Internet sensation that had many simultaneously laughing and cringing.9 Most Annoying Celebrity Laughers
October 28, 2011
He came toward us, humble and cringing, giving the beautiful Arab salute.It Happened in Egypt
C. N. Williamson
He was a little man, withered by age, and with a cringing manner.A Zola Dictionary
J. G. Patterson
He was cringing back, white-faced, from the edge of the gulch.Out of the Depths
Robert Ames Bennet
He stalked up to the cringing Harper, thrust his face toward him.The 4-D Doodler
Cowardice and a cringing humility were not regarded as faults in a slave.Socialism
- to shrink or flinch, esp in fear or servility
- to behave in a servile or timid way
- to wince in embarrassment or distaste
- to experience a sudden feeling of embarrassment or distaste
- the act of cringing
- the cultural cringe Australian subservience to overseas cultural standards
Word Origin and History for cringing
early 13c., from causative of Old English cringan "give way, fall (in battle), become bent," from Proto-Germanic *krank- "bend, curl up" (cf. Old Norse kringr, Dutch kring, German Kring "circle, ring"). Related: Cringed; cringing. As a noun from 1590s.