Definitions

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

  • intransitive v. To twist about in a wriggling, snakelike motion; writhe.
  • intransitive v. To feel or exhibit signs of humiliation or embarrassment.
  • n. The act of squirming.
  • n. A squirming movement.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To twist one’s body with snakelike motions.
  • v. To twist in discomfort, especially from shame or embarrassment.
  • v. To evade (a question, an interviewer etc).
  • v. To move in a slow, irregular motion.
  • n. A twisting, snakelike movement of the body.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • intransitive v. To twist about briskly with contortions like an eel or a worm; to wriggle; to writhe.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To wriggle or writhe, as an eel or a worm; hence, to writhe mentally.
  • To climb by wriggling; “shin”: as, to squirm up a tree.
  • n. A wriggling motion, like that of a worm or an eel.
  • n. Nautical, a twist in a rope.

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

  • v. to move in a twisting or contorted motion, (especially when struggling)
  • n. the act of wiggling

Etymologies

Origin unknown.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Unknown. Perhaps imitative. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • When I recall the things I have done, the meannesses I have stooped to, I squirm and squirm and _squirm_!

    The Road to Mandalay A Tale of Burma

  • Any sacrifice that makes me lose one crawl or squirm is foolish, — and not only foolish, for it is a wrong against myself and a wicked thing.

    Chapter 8

  • KillCon 2006 says: watching the left squirm is fun. “You don†™ t have the votes. .”

    Think Progress » VIDEO: Byrd Takes Frist To School

  • Watching the right squirm is so much fun. “You don†™ t have the votes. .”

    Think Progress » VIDEO: Byrd Takes Frist To School

  • Any sacrifice that makes me lose one crawl or squirm is foolish, -- and not only foolish, for it is a wrong against myself and a wicked thing.

    Chapter 8

  • Watching Republicans other than Sen. John McCain squirm when being questioned about torture in general, and waterboarding in particular — inventing extreme scenarios and talking about “simulated drowning” or a “little dunk in the water” — has revealed that torture could be a lollapalooza of a problem for many of the GOP’s 2008 candidates.

    Waldo Jaquith - “Waiting for the Guards.”

  • I'm certain this charming flirty thing is just what she does, and she does it well -- but dear god she makes me squirm, which is the point of it I imagine.

    lily-white Diary Entry

  • At least there will be a live video feed that will let the world see you squirm, which is something golf aficionados haven't witnessed on the course.

    BusinessWeek.com --

  • While her grilling of Geithner in September, over what members of Congress have called the "backdoor bailout" of Wall Street through AIG, inspired the "squirm" video, just last month Warren pressed Geithner on the administration's lackluster foreclosure-prevention plan, Making Home Affordable.

    Tim Geithner Opposes Nominating Elizabeth Warren To Lead New Consumer Agency

  • Responsibility for what; that I didn't care for your 'squirm' comment?

    Bunny Wins!

Comments

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  • My boss just used the word squirmy in an e-mail. Gotta love a boss like that.

    February 15, 2007