V2 Vocabulary Building Dictionary



Definition: to shrink away in fear

Synonyms: cringe, flinch, recoil, shrink, quail, tremble, huddle, crouch, curl up

Antonyms: swagger, strut, bully, intimidate

Tips: Cowering is an instinctive reaction to move away from something one is afraid of, but cannot run away from. To cower implies that fear roots you to the spot where you stand, and also that you are shivering or trembling with fear and have shrunk inward to make yourself smaller in order to be less noticeable to whatever is frightening you.

Usage Examples:

The little boy instinctively cowered at the fear of being yelled at by his father. (cringed, flinched)

Don't stand there cowering; stand up to the bully. (cringing, trembling)

She cowered at the thought of speaking in front of a large audience. (trembled, recoiled)

The bully gets joy from watching other kids cower in front of him. (cringe, tremble)

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