from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To grab or hold onto something.
  • intransitive verb To become attached to something; stick.
  • intransitive verb To focus the attention on or become interested in someone or something.
  • intransitive verb To understand or realize.
  • intransitive verb To cause to adhere; join together.
  • intransitive verb To get into one's hands or possession; grab or obtain.
  • intransitive verb To steal.
  • intransitive verb To look or stare at.
  • intransitive verb To understand; realize.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb transitive, informal To steal, to grab
  • verb intransitive to stare.
  • verb intransitive To attach.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • verb seize upon or latch onto something
  • verb take by theft


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Probably from Scots glam, to snatch at.]


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  • We didn't "glom" on to them, they were right out in the open.


  • "That one to 'glom' all the land between Willow Creek and the mountain."

    The Fighting Shepherdess

  • And the burden of his refrain was that never since Noah came out of the ark, "the sole survivor," and all the world his oyster, as it were, had there been such a chance to "glom" everything in sight for a song.

    The Fighting Shepherdess

  • Most of them wouldn’t know what you were talking about if you used the word glom – even those from back in the good ol’ noir days that never were.

    Don't Write What You Don't Know

  • Star that some racist groups may be trying to "glom" onto the movement, but said the movement itself is not racist. Front Page

  • With Gordon (directly and through his January 6 posting) and Christine (through her posting earlier today) egging me on, I am back at the 'glom' for a cameo run.


  • Off-radar: Sotheby's is offering 10 Picassos in its May 3 evening sale, and new collectors will likely glom onto his early "Blue Period" works from the early 1900s or his sinuous portraits from the 1930s.

    The Art Market Snaps Back

  • We're used to the rather unpleasant idea that Gonorrhea, the sexually-transmitted disease, can glom onto us, causing painful urination, rash or fever.

    Gonorrhea Is Poaching Humans' DNA

  • We're used to the rather unpleasant idea that Gonorrhea, the sexually-transmitted disease, can glom onto us, causing painful urination, rash or fever.

    Gonorrhea Is Poaching Humans' DNA

  • The West has lost it's confidence in assimilation, of self-sufficiency, so immigrants learn to celebrate their indigenous culture (which was so wonderful they had to leave it), to demand various rights, and glom onto racial and ethnic hucksters who make a living off the guilt of European suburbanites.

    Immigration: Has the Public Been Ignored?, Bryan Caplan | EconLog | Library of Economics and Liberty


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  • From the New York Times, November 8, 2007:

    Growing up Irish in Queens and on Long Island, Daniel Cassidy was nicknamed Glom.

    “I used to ask my mother, ‘Why Glom?’ and she’d say, ‘Because you’re always grabbing, always taking things,’�? he said, imitating his mother’s accent and limited patience, shaped by a lifetime in Irish neighborhoods in New York City.

    It was not exactly an etymological explanation, and Mr. Cassidy’s curiosity about the working-class Irish vernacular he grew up with kept growing. Some years back, leafing through a pocket Gaelic dictionary, he began looking for phonetic equivalents of the terms, which English dictionaries described as having “unknown origin.�?

    “Glom�? seemed to come from the Irish word “glam,�? meaning to grab or to snatch. He found the word “balbhán,�? meaning a silent person, and he surmised that it was why his quiet grandfather was called the similarly pronounced Boliver.

    November 13, 2007

  • ". . .salespersons who glom onto you and relentlessly hector you until you buy a service agreement."

    -- Dave Barry, 'Service Calls', Washington Post, September 2, 2001

    November 16, 2007

  • "On Red Square, the crowd broke down into five types: the missionaries - usually young girls, with scrubbed looks and religious zeal, doing good works for which they expected rewards; the provincials - the slightly rough-hewn youth who had glommed onto the orgs for a trip to the capital or some nationalistic sentiment; the suburbans, average-looking kids who wanted to be part of something larger; the professionals - the youth who realize in today's Russia, United/Just Russia and Putin are the only game in town (in the old days they would belong to the Komsomol); and the goons - sharp-faced thugs who constantly scanned the crowd hoping for some trouble."

    - Michael Hammerschlag, 'Putin's Children', International Herald Tribune, 5 July 2007.

    October 20, 2008

  • Then I realize that because the sacks were in front of her face she hasn't seen me, but may glom me now lumbering toward the floor of the basement...

    - William Gass, The Tunnel

    June 5, 2009