cling

verb
\ ˈkliŋ How to pronounce cling (audio) \
clung\ ˈkləŋ How to pronounce clung (audio) \; clinging

Definition of cling

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to hold together
b : to adhere as if glued firmly The shirt clung to his wet shoulders.
c : to hold or hold on tightly or tenaciously The kitten clung to the narrow branch.
2a : to have a strong emotional attachment or dependence he clung to his friends for support
b : to remain or linger as if resisting complete spreading or scattering The odor clung to the room for hours.

cling

noun
plural clings

Definition of cling (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of clinging : adherence
3 : a sheet of material (such as plastic or vinyl) designed to adhere to a flat surface by static electricity and often printed with an image or message When it's time for a new look, simply peel off the clings and store them away for another day.— Lorna Hordos

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Other Words from cling

Verb

clinger \ ˈkliŋ-​ər How to pronounce clinger (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for cling

Synonyms: Verb

adhere, cleave, hew, stick

Synonyms: Noun

adherence, adhesion, bonding

Antonyms: Noun

unsticking

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Choose the Right Synonym for cling

Verb

stick, adhere, cohere, cling, cleave mean to become closely attached. stick implies attachment by affixing or by being glued together. couldn't get the label to stick adhere is often interchangeable with stick but sometimes implies a growing together. antibodies adhering to a virus cohere suggests a sticking together of parts so that they form a unified mass. eggs will make the mixture cohere cling implies attachment by hanging on with arms or tendrils. clinging to a capsized boat cleave stresses strength of attachment. the wet shirt cleaved to his back

Examples of cling in a Sentence

Verb

The children clung together under the little umbrella waiting for the storm to pass. a dozen magnets clinging to the refrigerator

Noun

for certain types of materials that plastic wrap has very little cling
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

David King was clinging to life and later died at a hospital. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al, "Walker County father fatally shot son while on video call with female relative, lawmen say," 4 Sep. 2019 The system, which had briefly become a Category 1 hurricane, was clinging Sunday to tropical storm status with maximum sustained winds falling to 40 mph (65 kph). Jonathan Drew, The Denver Post, "Barry’s flood threat lingers as storm slowly sweeps inland," 14 July 2019 And while some of the old guard still clings to film format while the entertainment landscape changes rapidly around them, others are coming around. Sangeeta Singh-kurtz, Quartzy, "All of these super long movies should just be TV miniseries," 9 Sep. 2019 On a night-time field trip in the Peruvian Amazon rainforest, Frank spotted this bizarre-looking weevil clinging to a fern stem. Johnny Simon, Quartz, "A year’s worth of surprising and poignant nature photos," 8 Sep. 2019 In his final years he was frequently photographed snoozing during important African summit meetings — clinging to power, though barely able to stay awake. Robyn Dixon, Los Angeles Times, "Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s longtime president, dies at 95," 5 Sep. 2019 But clinging to the threads of a potential wild card berth just won’t cut it. Shayna Rubin, The Mercury News, "‘We’re in this to win the World Series’: After sweeping the Yankees, the Athletics are thinking bigger than wild card," 22 Aug. 2019 Other Marines were in the water, clinging to the pilings as protection from enemy fire. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Coming home: Remains of Marine killed in World War II buried at Miramar National Cemetery," 18 Aug. 2019 Meanwhile the Rockies, clinging to life in the National League wild-card race, had their few offensive surges negated by an inconsistent performance by German Marquez and another bullpen tanking. Kyle Newman, The Denver Post, "Astros rough up Rockies’ pitching in 11-6 win over Colorado in series opener," 6 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

As the Sox cling to their long-shot playoff hopes, players like Porcello, Holt and the others are trying to improve their own positions. Peter Abraham, BostonGlobe.com, "Pending free agency: One can only wonder how much it has affected Red Sox this season," 8 Sep. 2019 Starting the last week of August, Ela will also harvest freestones — peaches with pits that fall right off the fruit’s flesh — as opposed to clings, which do just what their name suggests. Josie Sexton, The Know, "From peach foie gras to boozy slushies, 20 ways to eat peaches at Denver restaurants right now," 28 Aug. 2019 The story of a witch with some too-heavy cling-ons. Kathryn Lindsay, refinery29.com, "Everything Coming To Netflix In July," 20 June 2019 Several spots on the T-shirt and hat clearly reject any attempt by the ketchup and mustard mixture to cling, whereas others afford it a bit of purchase. Lee Hutchinson, Ars Technica, "The Internet-demanded, partially scientific testing of Ultra-Ever Dry (in HD!)," 4 July 2018 An estimated 40,000 members of the ethnic minority cling to the belief that everything vital in the world originates from a woman, earning the region the nickname Kingdom of Daughters. Jason Motlagh, Marie Claire, "Kingdom of Women," 18 Jan. 2018 The idea later resulted in a bridal collection of minimalist, no-frills wedding slips with a simple silhouette and carefree cling, complete with adjustable pearl-fastened straps. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "Need a Wedding Dress and Pajamas? Sleeper Is the One-Stop Shop for Both," 5 Feb. 2018 Pickled mustard greens are essential, the tang offsetting the velvet cling of liquid fat. New York Times, "At Happy Stony Noodle, a Childhood Favorite Anchors the Menu," 25 Jan. 2018 The clings are meant to be peeled off after the party and reused at the next event. Bonnie Mccarthy, latimes.com, "Keep track of your cocktails with drink charms and markers," 16 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cling.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of cling

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

circa 1625, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cling

Verb and Noun

Middle English, from Old English clingan; akin to Old High German klunga tangled ball of thread

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Learn More about cling

Dictionary Entries near cling

cline

-cline

cliner

cling

cling-clang

cling film

clingfish

Statistics for cling

Last Updated

17 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for cling

The first known use of cling was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for cling

cling

verb

English Language Learners Definition of cling

: to hold onto something or someone very tightly
often disapproving : to stay very close to someone for emotional support, protection, etc.
: to stick to something or someone

cling

verb
\ ˈkliŋ How to pronounce cling (audio) \
clung\ ˈkləŋ \; clinging

Kids Definition of cling

1 : to hold fast by grasping or winding around To avoid falling, cling to the railing.
2 : to remain close He clings to the family.
3 : to hold fast or stick closely to a surface These wet socks are clinging to my feet.
4 : to continue to believe in We clung to the hope that we'd be rescued.

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More from Merriam-Webster on cling

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cling

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cling

Spanish Central: Translation of cling

Nglish: Translation of cling for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cling for Arabic Speakers

Comments on cling

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