• synonyms


See more synonyms for limp on Thesaurus.com
verb (used without object)
  1. to walk with a labored, jerky movement, as when lame.
  2. to proceed in a lame, faltering, or labored manner: His writing limps from one cliché to another. The old car limped along.
  3. to progress slowly and with great difficulty; make little or no advance: an economy that limps along at a level just above total bankruptcy.
Show More
  1. a lame movement or gait: The accident left him with a slight limp.
Show More

Origin of limp1

1560–70; back formation from obsolete limphault lame; Old English lemphealt limping (see halt2); akin to Middle High German limpfen to limp
Related formslimp·er, nounlimp·ing·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for limped

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • He limped about on his crutches, collected all things needful, and sat down to work.

  • After a little, he slid to the ground and limped over to her.

  • He limped up the hill to her, and sat down on the top step of the porch.

  • The man turned the handle of the Break of Day door, and limped in.

    Little Dorrit

    Charles Dickens

  • He limped a little, for Von Holzen had in the struggle kicked him on the ankle.

    Roden's Corner

    Henry Seton Merriman

British Dictionary definitions for limped


verb (intr)
  1. to walk with an uneven step, esp with a weak or injured leg
  2. to advance in a labouring or faltering manner
Show More
  1. an uneven walk or progress
Show More
Derived Formslimper, nounlimping, adjective, nounlimpingly, adverb

Word Origin

C16: probably a back formation from obsolete limphalt lame, from Old English lemphealt; related to Middle High German limpfen to limp


  1. not firm or stiff
  2. not energetic or vital
  3. (of the binding of a book) not stiffened with boards
Show More
Derived Formslimply, adverblimpness, noun

Word Origin

C18: probably of Scandinavian origin; related to Icelandic limpa looseness
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 limped



1560s, of unknown origin, perhaps related to Middle English lympen "to fall short" (c.1400), which is probably from Old English lemphealt "halting, lame, limping," which has a lone cognate in the rare Middle High German limphin, and perhaps is from a PIE root meaning "slack, loose, to hang down" (cf. Sanskrit lambate "hangs down," Middle High German lampen "to hang down"). Related: Limped; limping. As a noun, 1818, from the verb.

Show More



1706, "flaccid, drooping," of obscure origin, perhaps related to limp (v.).

Show More
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

limped in Medicine


  1. An irregular, jerky, or awkward gait; a claudication.
Show More
  1. To walk lamely, especially with irregularity, as if favoring one leg.
Show More
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.