Cringe v. t. [imp. & p. p. Cringed p. pr. & vb. n. Cringing.] To draw one's self together as in fear or servility; to bend or crouch with base humility; to wince; hence, to make court in a degrading manner; to fawn.
When they were come up to the place where the lions were, the boys that went before were glad to cringe behind, for they were afraid of the lions. --Bunyan.
Sly hypocrite, . . . who more than thou
Once fawned and cringed, and servilely adored
Heaven's awful monarch? --Milton.
Flatterers . . . are always bowing and cringing. --Arbuthnot.
Cringe, v. t. To contract; to draw together; to cause to shrink or wrinkle; to distort. [Obs.]
Till like a boy you see him cringe his face,
And whine aloud for mercy. --Shak.
Cringe, n. Servile civility; fawning; a shrinking or bowing, as in fear or servility. “With cringe and shrug, and bow obsequious.”
v 1: draw back, as with fear or pain; "she flinched when they
showed the slaughtering of the calf" [syn: flinch, squinch,
funk, shrink, wince, recoil, quail]
2: show submission or fear [syn: fawn, crawl, creep, cower,