1 of 2


prowled; prowling; prowls

intransitive verb

: to move about or wander stealthily in or as if in search of prey

transitive verb

: to roam over in a predatory manner


2 of 2


: an act or instance of prowling
on the prowl
: in the act of prowling
also : in search of something
his fourth wife had just left him, and he was on the prowl again Mary McCarthy

Examples of prowl in a Sentence

Verb a tiger prowling in the jungle He moved like a tiger prowling the jungle. The police were prowling the streets in their patrol cars. He liked to prowl the streets late at night. I prowled the store looking for sales. I prowled through the store looking for sales. Noun a prowl through the bookshop
Recent Examples on the Web
The hunters are prowling and the hunted look… vulnerable: Can a championship hangover show up in the second round? Parker Gabriel, The Denver Post, 6 May 2024 Cheekily titled Age Don’t Mean a Thing, the record showcased the dynamic performer who prowled the Mohawk stage late on Thursday night. Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rolling Stone, 15 Mar. 2024 Just last week, KTLA reported on another mountain lion seen prowling the streets of nearby Riverside. Travis Hall, Field & Stream, 14 Feb. 2024 The parking lot is a mess, cars prowling for an empty space, shoppers weaving through the tangle with overloaded carts. David Wharton, Los Angeles Times, 8 Feb. 2024 On Sunday, Seattle police released a video showing three suspects prowling around a home before forcing their way inside and stealing personal items. Stepheny Price, Fox News, 4 Feb. 2024 With a sliver of the imposing Beaux Arts federal building rising from the left, the phalanx is framed by leafy green trees — an ensemble rather like classical sculptures of ancient deities, orators and ancestors prowling a 17th century garden at an English manor. Christopher Knight, Los Angeles Times, 31 Jan. 2024 And at the time, Soviet trawlers were prowling the area. John Metcalfe, The Mercury News, 30 Jan. 2024 Onstage, Herring prowls the stage like a lion, often while his bandmates barely move. Travis M. Andrews, Washington Post, 26 Jan. 2024
Dogs identified as pit bulls have been on the prowl at Hines Park in Wayne County, and one of them has now ended up dead, shot by a sheriff's deputy. Detroit Free Press, 19 Apr. 2024 Lamott, who has been gratefully sober and a devout Christian since 1986, thanks to Alcoholics Anonymous and her supportive church community, is ever on the prowl for guidelines about how to live best. Heller McAlpin, The Christian Science Monitor, 11 Apr. 2024 On the prowl with a trapper who works to keep D.C.’s feral-cat population in check Apart from genetic issues, feral cat populations are often teeming with diseases that can spread to pets or even humans, said Jeanette Davis, a board member and volunteer at the Feline Rescue Association. María Luisa Paúl, Washington Post, 14 Feb. 2024 On the prowl Like the red pandas the bears at the zoo are naturally solitary, and because of that, Qannik the polar bear is in an exhibit all on her own. Maggie Menderski, The Courier-Journal, 7 Feb. 2024 Beware animatronic animals this Halloween: the murderous cast of Five Nights at Freddy's is on the prowl after dominating the weekend box office. Shania Russell,, 29 Oct. 2023 Franklin leads the charge in the Southeast Conference once again this season, but two teams on the prowl could gain some ground with a win here. Michael Whitlow, Journal Sentinel, 8 Jan. 2024 Lions' fans are on the prowl for more ways to sport their team's signature Honolulu Blue and silver. Kylie Martin, Detroit Free Press, 4 Jan. 2024 Mini-major Lionsgate is also on the prowl, dating Saw XI for September 2024 and White Bird: A Wonder Story for October. Pamela McClintock, The Hollywood Reporter, 15 Dec. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'prowl.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



Middle English prollen

First Known Use


14th century, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense


1803, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of prowl was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near prowl

Cite this Entry

“Prowl.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2024.

Kids Definition


: to move about or wander in a secretive manner in or as if in search of prey
: to roam over like a wild beast
prowl the streets
prowl noun
prowler noun

More from Merriam-Webster on prowl

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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