) KEY VERB: cried
z) KEY VERB: intr.
- To sob or shed tears because of grief, sorrow, or pain; weep.
- To call loudly; shout.
- To utter a characteristic sound or call. Used of an animal.
- To demand or require immediate action or remedy: grievances crying out for redress.
NOUN: pl. cries
- To utter loudly; call out.
- To proclaim or announce in public: crying one's wares in the marketplace.
- To bring into a particular condition by weeping: cry oneself to sleep.
- Archaic To beg for; implore: cry forgiveness.
PHRASAL VERBS: cry down
- A loud utterance of an emotion, such as fear, anger, or despair.
- A loud exclamation; a shout or call.
- A fit of weeping: had a good long cry.
- An urgent entreaty or appeal.
- A public or general demand or complaint.
- A common view or general report.
- An advertising of wares by calling out: venders' cries at the fish market.
- A rallying call or signal: a cry to arms.
- A slogan, especially a political one.
- The characteristic call or utterance of an animal.
- The baying of hounds during the chase.
- A pack of hounds.
- Obsolete Clamor; outcry.
- Obsolete A public announcement; a proclamation.
- To belittle or disparage.
- To break or withdraw from a promise, agreement, or undertaking.
IDIOMS: cry havoc
- To praise highly; extol.
cry (one's) eyes/heart out
- To sound an alarm; warn.
cry on (someone's) shoulder
- To weep inconsolably for a long time.
cry over spilled milk
- To tell one's problems to someone else in an attempt to gain sympathy or consolation.
- To regret in vain what cannot be undone or rectified.
for crying out loud
- To raise a false alarm.
in full cry
- Used to express annoyance or astonishment: Let's get going, for crying out loud!
- In hot pursuit, as hounds hunting.
Middle English crien
, from Old French crier
, from Vulgar Latin *critre
, from Latin quirtre
, to cry out
, perhaps from Quirts
, public officers to whom one would cry out in times of needSYNONYMS: cry, weep, wail, keen2, whimper, sob, blubber1
These verbs mean to make inarticulate sounds of grief, unhappiness, or pain. Cry
both involve the shedding of tears; cry
more strongly implies accompanying sound: "She cried without trying to suppress any of the noisier manifestations of grief and confusion" (J. D. Salinger). "I weep for what I'm like when I'm alone" (Theodore Roethke). Wail
refers primarily to sustained, inarticulate mournful sound: "The women . . . began to wail together; they mourned with shrill cries" (Joseph Conrad). Keen
suggests wailing and lamentation for the dead: "It is the wild Irish women keening over their dead" (George A. Lawrence). Whimper
refers to low, plaintive, broken or repressed cries: The condemned prisoner cowered and began to whimper for clemency. Sob
describes weeping or a mixture of broken speech and weeping marked by convulsive breathing or gasping: "sobbing and crying, and wringing her hands as if her heart would break" (Laurence Sterne). Blubber
refers to noisy shedding of tears accompanied by broken or inarticulate speech: "When he drew out what had been a fiddle, crushed to morsels in the greatcoat, he blubbered aloud" (Emily Brontë).