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prowl

[proul] /praʊl/
verb (used without object)
1.
to rove or go about stealthily, as in search of prey, something to steal, etc.
verb (used with object)
2.
to rove over or through in search of what may be found:
The cat prowled the alleys in search of food.
noun
3.
act of prowling.
Idioms
4.
on the prowl, in the act of prowling; searching stealthily:
The cat is on the prowl for mice.
Origin
1350-1400
1350-1400; Middle English prollen < ?
Related forms
prowlingly, adverb
unprowling, adjective
Synonyms
1. roam. See lurk.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for un prowling

prowl

/praʊl/
verb
1.
when intr, often foll by around or about. to move stealthily around (a place) as if in search of prey or plunder
noun
2.
the act of prowling
3.
on the prowl
  1. moving around stealthily
  2. zealously pursuing members of the opposite sex
Derived Forms
prowler, noun
Word Origin
C14 prollen, of unknown origin
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for un prowling

prowl

v.

late 14c., prollen, "move about in search of something," of unknown origin, with no known cognates. Spelling with -w- is from 1500s (cf. bowl), but pronounced "prôll" till late 18c. Meaning "go stealthily in search of prey" is first recorded 1580s. Related: Prowled; prowling. The noun, in on the prowl, is attested from 1803.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for un prowling

prowl

verb

To search by running the hands over the person; frisk: prowled me over carefully with his left hand (1914+)

Related Terms

on the prowl


The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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