One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
Chiefly Botany. Of a plant or part of a plant, or (later also) a sessile animal: somewhat repent; especially having a growth habit intermediate between prostrate and erect. Now rare.
Mid 17th century (in an earlier sense). From classical Latin subrēpent-, subrēpēns, present participle of subrēpere to crawl, creep, ooze from sub- + rēpere to creep.
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