verb lin·ger \ˈliŋ-gər\

: to stay somewhere beyond the usual or expected time

: to continue to exist as time passes

: to remain alive while becoming weaker

lin·geredlin·ger·ing \-g(ə-)riŋ\

Full Definition of LINGER

intransitive verb
:  to be slow in parting or in quitting something :  tarry <fans lingered outside the door>
a :  to remain alive although gradually dying
b :  to remain existent although often waning in strength, importance, or influence <lingering doubts> <lingering odors>
:  to be slow to act :  procrastinate
:  to move slowly :  saunter
transitive verb
obsolete :  delay
:  to pass (as a period of time) slowly
lin·ger·er \-gər-ər\ noun
lin·ger·ing·ly \-g(ə-)riŋ-lē\ adverb

Examples of LINGER

  1. The tourists didn't linger very long.
  2. She lingered at the art exhibit.
  3. He lingered in bed and missed breakfast.
  4. They lingered over coffee after dinner.
  5. The heat lingered long after the sun had gone down.
  6. The smell of her perfume lingered.
  7. The idea lingered in their minds.

Origin of LINGER

Middle English (northern dialect) lengeren to dwell, frequentative of lengen to prolong, from Old English lengan; akin to Old English lang long
First Known Use: 14th century

Rhymes with LINGER

LINGERER Defined for Kids


verb lin·ger \ˈliŋ-gər\

Definition of LINGER for Kids

:  to be slow in leaving :  delay <We lingered at the park.>
:  to continue to exist as time passes <A faint smell of fried fish lingered about the place … — J. K. Rowling, Chamber of Secrets>


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