See also: Cram

English edit

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Etymology edit

From Middle English crammen, from Old English crammian (to cram; stuff), from Proto-West Germanic *krammōn, from Proto-Germanic *krammōną, a secondary verb derived from *krimmaną (to stuff), from Proto-Indo-European *ger- (to assemble; collect; gather). Compare Old English crimman (to cram; stuff; insert; press; bruise), Icelandic kremja (to squeeze; crush; bruise).

Pronunciation edit

  • IPA(key): /kɹæm/
    • (file)
  • Rhymes: -æm

Verb edit

cram (third-person singular simple present crams, present participle cramming, simple past and past participle crammed)

  1. (transitive) To press, force, or drive, particularly in filling, or in thrusting one thing into another; to stuff; to fill to superfluity.
    to cram fruit into a basket; to cram a room with people
    • 2012, Andrew Martin, Underground Overground: A passenger's history of the Tube, Profile Books, →ISBN, page 244:
      Are we to blame Livingstone for Tube overcrowding? In part, yes, but as Sir John Eliot had observed in 1955, while Chairman of the London Transport Executive: 'They're not crammed in. They cram themselves in.'
    • 2022 November 16, Paul Bigland, “From rural branches to high-speed arteries”, in RAIL, number 970, page 55:
      The storm has passed when I arrive at Southampton Central, but more fun is to come. The station platforms and waiting rooms are crammed with people, many toting enormous amounts of baggage as they have just come off a cruise liner.
  2. (transitive) To fill with food to satiety; to stuff.
    The boy crammed himself with cake
  3. (transitive) To put hastily through an extensive course of memorizing or study, as in preparation for an examination.
    A pupil is crammed by his tutor.
  4. (intransitive) To study hard; to swot.
  5. (intransitive) To eat greedily, and to satiety; to stuff oneself.
  6. (intransitive, dated, British slang) To lie; to intentionally not tell the truth.
  7. (transitive, dated, British slang) To make (a person) believe false or exaggerated tales.

Derived terms edit

Translations edit

Noun edit

cram (countable and uncountable, plural crams)

  1. The act of cramming (forcing or stuffing something).
  2. Information hastily memorized.
    a cram from an examination
  3. (weaving) A warp having more than two threads passing through each dent or split of the reed.
  4. (dated, British slang) A lie; a falsehood.
    Synonyms: see Thesaurus:lie
  5. (uncountable) A mathematical board game in which players take turns placing dominoes horizontally or vertically until no more can be placed, the loser being the player who cannot continue.
  6. A small friendship book with limited space for people to enter their information.
    • 2017, Mark Duffett, Fan Identities and Practices in Context: Dedicated to Music, page 194:
      Regular friendship books had a variety of variations, such as slams, crams, and decos.
    • 2019, Manjit Bal, Lovingly Yours - Penpals:
      Pen pals also make and pass around friendship books, slams and crams. In recent years, pen pal correspondence with prison inmates has gained acceptance on the Internet.

Translations edit

References edit

  • (verb senses: studying and telling lies): 1873, John Camden Hotten, The Slang Dictionary

Anagrams edit