• 1 Move smoothly and quietly with gliding steps, in a stealthy or sensuous manner.

    ‘the fox came slinking through the woods’
    • ‘She silently made her way past the bookshelves to Dymion's room, slinking along quietly.’
    • ‘She turned to face him again as he took a step forward, slinking forward like a wolf toward cornered prey.’
    • ‘They moved like cats downhill, slinking in the shadows like natural-born predators, breathing in the dust and death.’
    • ‘I pretended not to hear her, and she slunk down the steps a minute later.’
    • ‘I proceeded to stealthily slink through the hallways, lurk in the cafeteria, the library, the football field, the gym.’
    • ‘Nine missions (plus training) find the stealthy super-spy slinking and scrolling from side to side across the globe.’
    • ‘We learned to tell how big a rodent she had spotted by the posture she adopted, how close to the ground she slunk or how fast she moved.’
    • ‘He moves after her swiftly, his arms slinking around her waist and hands firmly clamping to the spot where the knife is… I don't want to die until I do this.’
    • ‘And with that she was gone, gliding out the door like a cat slinking away after a successful kill.’
    • ‘The cat sat still until the basket came to rest against the rocky bank, then she slowly raised her front paw and slunk forward, one slow careful step at a time.’
    • ‘She hid behind a rock and quietly slunk around the pond, seeking refuge behind rocks and boulders.’
    • ‘Slowly slinking against the wall, she quietly made her way to the door that came off the entryway.’
    • ‘She quietly opened it up and slunk through, with Daniel on her tail.’
    • ‘Nicola nodded and slunk quietly over to the sleeping bags, trying not to attract the attention of whatever Landon had heard.’
    • ‘No one much noticed Elanor slinking in quietly, but a sullen man in the corner pulled up and stared, moving across the ballroom floor like a man possessed.’
    • ‘Something moved there now, no longer slinking but charging towards him through the sea of fire that the field had become.’
    • ‘He slunk stealthily to the captain's cabin where the girl sat weeping on the bed, awaiting her terrible fate.’
    • ‘Closing her door I slunk around, slipping inside the car myself.’
    • ‘Obeying his orders, the pack stopped fighting and slunk in the woods, disappearing behind the trees.’
    • ‘They moved on, slinking through the slimy, black tunnels, trying hard not to think or display any emotion.’
    slip, move lightly, move quietly, steal
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    1. 1.1 Come or go unobtrusively or furtively.
      ‘all his so-called friends have slunk off’
      • ‘According to reports, the edgy animal had slunk away into the darkness of the power outage, spreading panic among the thronging crowds.’
      • ‘They don't know people who've left their departments, or any departments, who have mostly slunk out.’
      • ‘As she slunk away in deep embarrassment the clerk mouthed the words ‘thank you’ to us all.’
      • ‘We slink in quietly and go to the registration desk.’
      • ‘He bought her a house in Cork Street, and her husband slunk away.’
      • ‘About $15 billion in foreign exchange has slunk offshore.’
      • ‘He slunk away after the debate without taking one question from the media.’
      • ‘They quietly left the room and slunk down the hall.’
      • ‘She had hoped he might slink quietly away to count his losses.’
      • ‘I like to think it was a part of me that hovered there, lost and afraid, alien and lonely, slinking after my retreating steps.’
      • ‘I meekly asked again for a pint and slunk away from the bar.’
      • ‘After flunking early out of university, he slunk home to Edinburgh and ‘on a whim’ got a job as a stagehand.’
      • ‘They all, one by one, dropped their stones and slunk away.’
      • ‘I had never seen someone slink out of the Chamber in such an embarrassed manner.’
      • ‘He could not bear to listen and slunk out of the room.’
      • ‘He grumbled under his breath and slunk back a few steps.’
      • ‘The previous scientist took a step backward, then slunk out of the door, ashamed.’
      • ‘We all hugged her after she slunk back to us, still quivering.’
      • ‘Pulling this over her golden brown locks, she proceeded to slink off in the darkest shadows as stealthily and silently as a cat.’
      • ‘I followed him back into the woods, slinking away as only a true hunter could.’
      creep, sneak, steal, slip, slide, sidle, edge, move furtively, tiptoe, pussyfoot, pad
      skulk, lurk
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  • [in singular] A slinking movement or walk.

    ‘she moved with a sensuous slink’
    • ‘The departing male flaps off with an unusual gliding rhythm that Kemp suspects is a loser butterfly's submissive slink.’
    • ‘When in the bar scene she emerges from her self-imposed isolation, her slink and swagger is perfect.’
    • ‘In each scene she has just the right look, the right slink in her walk and deceitful glint in her eye.’
    • ‘She moved with a slink that was more feline than Piebald's walk.’
    • ‘All colours and creeds are here, drawn by the slow slink of the sun.’
    • ‘For a split second there was a flashback to that night she'd first come into my room: that predatory slink, as fluid as oil on water, and seeing her now was a horrible reminder of what'd happened to her.’
    • ‘Carey's excellent current album, turns the clock back to the halcyon days of laser-guided digital slink.’
    • ‘Her top 10 single is a grown-up version of an old tune, with heartfelt strums replacing the slink of old.’


Old English slincan crawl, creep; compare with Middle Dutch and Middle Low German slinken subside, sink.