From Middle English crampe, from Old French crampe, cranpe (“cramp”), from Old Frankish *krampa (“cramp”), from Proto-Germanic *krampō (“cramp, clasp”), from Proto-Indo-European *grem- (“to unite; lap, pile, heap”), from Proto-Indo-European *ger- (“to unite, collect, forgather”). Cognate with Dutch kramp (“cramp”), German Low German Kramp (“cramp”), German Krampe and Krampf (“cramp”), Swedish kramp (“cramp”), Icelandic krampa (“cramp”). See also Proto-Germanic *kruppaz (“lump, round mass, body, crop”), Ancient Greek ἀγείρω (ageírō, “I gather, collect”), whence ἀγορά (agorá), Latin grex.
cramp (plural cramps)
- A painful contraction of a muscle which cannot be controlled.
- Sir T. More
- The cramp, divers nights, gripeth him in his legs.
- Sir T. More
- That which confines or contracts; a restraint; a shackle; a hindrance.
- A narrow fortune is a cramp to a great mind.
- crippling his pleasures with the cramp of fear
- A clamp for carpentry or masonry.
- A piece of wood having a curve corresponding to that of the upper part of the instep, on which the upper leather of a boot is stretched to give it the requisite shape.
- The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.
- (intransitive) (of a muscle) To contract painfully and uncontrollably.
- (transitive) To prohibit movement or expression.
- You're cramping my style.
- The mind may be as much cramped by too much knowledge as by ignorance.
- (transitive) To restrain to a specific physical position, as if with a cramp.
- You're going to need to cramp the wheels on this hill.
- when the gout cramps my joints
- To fasten or hold with, or as if with, a cramp.
- (by extension) To bind together; to unite.
- The […] fabric of universal justice is well cramped and bolted together in all its parts.
- To form on a cramp.
- to cramp boot legs
- “cramp” in Douglas Harper, Online Etymology Dictionary (2001).