- crinch (dialectal)
From Middle English *crinchen, crenchen, crengen, from Old English *crenċan, *crenċġan, *crengan (“to cause to fall, turn”), from Proto-Germanic *krangijaną (“to cause to turn”), causative of Proto-Germanic *kringaną, *krinkaną (“to fall”), from Proto-Indo-European *grenǵʰ- (“to twist, wind”). Cognate with Scots crenge, creinge, creenge, crienge (“to cringe, shrug”), West Frisian kringe (“to push, poke, insist, urge, pinch”), Dutch krengen (“to veer, careen”), Danish krænge (“to turn inside out, evert”), Swedish kränga (“to heel, lurch, toss, careen”). Related to crinkle.
- A posture or gesture of shrinking or recoiling.
- He glanced with a cringe at the mess on his desk.
- (dated) A servile obeisance.
- (dialectal) A crick.
- (uncountable, slang) An embarrassing event or situation which causes an onlooker to cringe.
- There was so much cringe in that episode!
- (intransitive) To shrink, cower, tense or recoil, as in fear, disgust or embarrassment.
- He cringed as the bird collided with the window.
- 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.
- (dated, intransitive) To bow or crouch in servility.
- (transitive, obsolete) To contract; to draw together; to cause to shrink or wrinkle; to distort.
- Till like a boy you see him cringe his face, / And whine aloud for mercy.