Creep (kr?p), v. t. [imp. Crept (kr?pt) (Crope (krp), Obs.); p. p. Crept; p. pr. & vb. n. Creeping.] [OE. crepen, creopen, AS. crepan; akin to D. kruipen, G. kriechen, Icel. krjupa, Sw. krypa, Dan. krybe. Cf. Cripple, Crouch.]


To move along the ground, or on any other surface, on the belly, as a worm or reptile; to move as a child on the hands and knees; to crawl.

Ye that walk The earth, and stately tread, or lowly creep. Milton.


To move slowly, feebly, or timorously, as from unwillingness, fear, or weakness.

The whining schoolboy . . . creeping, like snail, Unwillingly to school. Shak.

Like guilty thing, Icreep. Tennyson.


To move in a stealthy or secret manner; to move imperceptibly or clandestinely; to steal in; to insinuate itself or one's self; as, age creeps upon us.

The sothistry which creeps into most of the books of argument. Locke.

Of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women. 2. Tim. iii. 6.


To slip, or to become slightly displaced; as, the collodion on a negative, or a coat of varnish, may creep in drying; the quicksilver on a mirror may creep.


To move or behave with servility or exaggerated humility; to fawn; as, a creeping sycophant.

To come as humbly as they used to creep. Shak.


To grow, as a vine, clinging to the ground or to some other support by means of roots or rootlets, or by tendrils, along its length.

"Creeping vines."



To have a sensation as of insects creeping on the skin of the body; to crawl; as, the sight made my flesh creep. See Crawl, v. i.,4.


To drag in deep water with creepers, as for recovering a submarine cable.


© Webster 1913.

Creep, n.


The act or process of creeping.


A distressing sensation, or sound, like that occasioned by the creeping of insects.

A creep of undefinable horror. Blackwood's Mag.

Out of the stillness, with gathering creep, Like rising wind in leaves. Lowell.

3. Mining

A slow rising of the floor of a gallery, occasioned by the pressure of incumbent strata upon the pillars or sides; a gradual movement of mining ground.


© Webster 1913.