Definition of heaving in US English:



  • (of a place) extremely crowded.

    ‘the foyer was absolutely heaving with people’
    • ‘And the sun did shine upon them, perhaps a bit too strongly, and the heaving throng had a most excellent time.’
    • ‘From the heaving Princes Street pavement between Hanover Street and Frederick Street the access to number 86 is nothing to boast about.’
    • ‘As the artists working in the print studio pack away their things, the Jute cafe bar on the other side of the glass wall begins to fill with the heaving pre-club crowd.’
    • ‘So much so they had no problem selling out the Olympia Theatre last night with screaming fans and even a number of celebrity faces in the heaving crowd.’
    • ‘The soldiers will find a heaving city of misery, mortars and stray bullets.’
    • ‘Teenagers wept as the singing sensation sang inches from their faces and played along for the heaving crowd, which spilled out into the city centre.’
    • ‘The usually hushed tunnels of the Washington metro turned into a heaving mass of cowboy hats, eel-skin boots and crocodile formations of ecstatic schoolgirls with tooth braces.’
    • ‘Despite not having been able to book, we didn't have long to wait before we were led through the heaving restaurant to a tiny table for two in a far corner.’
    • ‘With increasing desperation, he looked for it, scanning the heaving landscape before him for something to hold onto.’
    • ‘Some teenage fans were in raptures as the chart-topper sang yards from them and played along for the heaving crowd which spilled out into the city centre.’
    • ‘I glanced back out at the heaving crowd and debated slamming the door shut and hiding in here.’
    • ‘Despite the heaving crowds the policemen and women on duty were all good natured and didn't seem to mind a bit of gentle ribbing from the stage.’
    • ‘The meltingpot that makes up this heaving city offered us a chance to blend - to the extent we were asked directions by visiting American hillbillies.’
    • ‘In the heaving streets, people don't seem to carry shopping bags, though the bars and restaurants are bursting.’
    • ‘I would have been happier if he had used his persuasive powers with the Lord to heal the heaving roads of Bangalore.’
    • ‘Rarely crowded, it's a place to chill and have drinks with friends without having to bash your way through a heaving crowd just to go to the bathroom.’
    • ‘A food market that is usually heaving with bustling shoppers was deserted.’
    • ‘The other man stared down at the heaving crowd with a morbid curiosity.’
    • ‘They all made up part of a heaving 8,000 strong crowd at the first of two Irish gigs as parts of their Licks tour.’
    • ‘Trapped in a hot, heaving crowd, I suffer the most terrifying claustrophobia of my life.’
    harsh, severe, bad, bleak, extreme, inclement
    View synonyms