creep

verb
\ ˈkrēp How to pronounce creep (audio) \
crept\ ˈkrept How to pronounce crept (audio) \; creeping

Definition of creep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

1a : to move along with the body prone and close to the ground A spider was creeping along the bathroom floor.
b : to move slowly on hands and knees He crept toward the edge of the cliff.
2a : to go very slowly The hours crept by.
b : to go timidly or cautiously so as to escape notice She crept away from the festive scene.
c : to enter or advance gradually so as to be almost unnoticed Age creeps up on us. A note of irritation crept into her voice.
3 : to have the sensation of being covered with creeping things The thought made his flesh creep.
4 of a plant : to spread or grow over a surface rooting at intervals or clinging with tendrils, stems, or aerial roots
5a : to slip or gradually shift position The high temperatures of the jet engine cause the turbine blade to creep.
b : to change shape permanently from prolonged stress or exposure to high temperatures

creep

noun

Definition of creep (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a movement of or like creeping traffic moving at a creep
2 : a distressing sensation like that caused by the creeping of insects over one's flesh especially : a feeling of apprehension or horror usually used in plural with the That gives me the creeps.
3 : a feed trough accessible only by young animals and used especially to supply special or supplementary feed

called also creep feeder

4 : the slow change of dimensions of an object from prolonged exposure to high temperature or stress
5 : an unpleasant or obnoxious person
6 : a slow but persistent increase or elevation This political inertia … makes budget creep inevitable.The Wall Street Journal

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Synonyms for creep

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of creep in a Sentence

Verb She crept toward the edge of the roof and looked over. I caught him creeping down the stairs to the kitchen. She crept into bed next to her sleeping husband. The hours crept by as we waited for morning. a train creeping through the town The price of gasoline has crept back up to three dollars a gallon. A few mistakes crept in during the last revision of the paper. new words creeping into the language Noun I get the creeps every time he walks by. I hate snakes. They give me the creeps. That guy gives me the creeps.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb But columnist Virginia Heffernan is feeling a little creeped out by the ever softer synthetics showing up everywhere. Aric Jenkins, Fortune, "Why Airbnb just hired a former Disney theme park boss," 30 Jan. 2020 The booth contained dozens of human-sized screens with eerily realist avatars creeping everyone out. Popular Science, "The weirdest, wildest, and coolest images from CES 2020," 9 Jan. 2020 If that doesn’t creep you out, the difficulty of killing them will. Bonnie Blodgett, Twin Cities, "Blundering Gardener: Readers share observations about fireflies and the dreaded Japanese beetles," 3 Aug. 2019 Earth’s crust is made up of tectonic plates that creep in all directions across the planet, traveling as much as a few inches per year. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Volcano Eruptions," 18 Nov. 2019 Winston took a month off and worked on his leg strength in the offseason to help prevent tendinitis that crept into his knees toward the end of the long run. Chris Solari, Detroit Free Press, "Cassius Winston and the quest for Michigan State basketball glory," 4 Nov. 2019 Oregon and a road win against a Texas A&M team that will creep back into the top 25 makes for a solid résumé. Christopher Smith, al, "Don’t get sucked into betting on Auburn vs. Ole Miss," 29 Oct. 2019 From nostalgia trends already peaking in 2019 – leather in all forms, thong sandals and tie-dye are only a few throwback styles that are creeping its way back, to iconic brands reaching new heights, 2020 is the year for fashion. Essence, "New Era Celebrates 100 Years In The Fashion Industry," 16 Jan. 2020 This may work to help with initial motivation, but doesn’t allow room for course correction (or those inevitable emotions that may creep in), ultimately making those goals unattainable. Stephanie Mansour, NBC News, "5 mistakes people make when setting health goals in the new year," 7 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Facebook won’t let lonely hearts — or creeps — send photos or website links, which could help cut down on unsolicited photos. Barbara Ortutay, SFChronicle.com, "Friends with benefits: Can Facebook tackle your love life?," 6 Sep. 2019 Facebook also won’t allow lonely hearts — or creeps — to send photos or website links, which could help cut down on unsolicited body-part photos. Washington Post, "Friends with benefits: Can Facebook tackle your love life?," 5 Sep. 2019 Facebook won’t let lonely hearts — or creeps — send photos or website links, which could help cut down on unsolicited photos. Barbara Ortutay, Los Angeles Times, "Going from like to love: Facebook online dating service launches in U.S.," 5 Sep. 2019 Facebook also won't allow lonely hearts — or creeps — to send photos or website links, which could help cut down on unsolicited body-part photos. Irina Ivanova, CBS News, "As Facebook launches "Facebook Dating" in U.S., a blog finds 400 million exposed user phone numbers," 5 Sep. 2019 Facebook also won’t allow lonely hearts — or creeps — to send photos or website links, which could help cut down on unsolicited body-part photos. Barbara Ortutay, BostonGlobe.com, "Can Facebook tackle your love life, too?," 5 Sep. 2019 The overall upward creep of prices has also led insurance premiums to rise, taking a bite out of tax revenue, wages and corporate profits, too. Margot Sanger-katz, New York Times, "In the U.S., an Angioplasty Costs $32,000. Elsewhere? Maybe $6,400.," 27 Dec. 2019 In a time when Craigslist was for creeps and AIM was for your friends, Chatroulette held space for the bigness of the internet. Arielle Pardes, Wired, "Chatroulette Was Shorthand for Chaos Online. Then Came the 2010s," 24 Dec. 2019 The steadily increasing megapixel camera, the always more powerful processor, the unending price creep. Darren Orf, Popular Mechanics, "Google Finally Makes a Phone for the Rest of Us," 7 May 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'creep.' 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 creep

Verb

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

Noun

1818, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for creep

Verb and Noun

Middle English crepen, from Old English crēopan; akin to Old Norse krjūpa to creep

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Time Traveler for creep

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for creep

Last Updated

8 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Creep.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/creep?pronunciation&lang=en_us&dir=c&file=creep001. Accessed 16 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for creep

creep

verb
How to pronounce creep (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of creep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to move slowly with the body close to the ground
: to move slowly and quietly especially in order to not be noticed
: to go or seem to go very slowly

creep

noun

English Language Learners Definition of creep (Entry 2 of 2)

informal
: a strange person who you strongly dislike
: an uncomfortable feeling of nervousness or fear

creep

verb
\ ˈkrēp How to pronounce creep (audio) \
crept\ ˈkrept \; creeping

Kids Definition of creep

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to move along with the body close to the ground or floor : move slowly on hands and knees : crawl
2 : to move or advance slowly, timidly, or quietly Moving quietly, I crept halfway down the stairs and listened.— Avi, Crispin
3 : to grow or spread along the ground or along a surface Ivy was creeping up a wall.

creep

noun

Kids Definition of creep (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a strange or unlikable person
2 : a slow, timid, or quiet movement
3 : a feeling of nervousness or fear usually used in pl.Spiders give me the creeps.

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More from Merriam-Webster on creep

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for creep

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with creep

Spanish Central: Translation of creep

Nglish: Translation of creep for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of creep for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about creep

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