cling past tense and past participle clung [intransitive]
1 [always + adverb/preposition]
to hold someone or something tightly, especially because you do not feel safe
cling to/on/at etc
He wailed and clung to his mother.
Passengers clung desperately onto the lifeboats.
2 [always + adverb/preposition]
to stick to someone or something, or seem to surround them
cling to/around etc
His wet shirt clung to his body.
The smell of cigarette smoke clung to her clothes.
to stay close to someone all the time because you are too dependent on them or do not feel safe - used to show disapproval:
Some children tend to cling on their first day at school.
a less clinging wife
cling onphrasal verb
Other businesses cling on and hope.
cling to somethingphrasal verb
to continue to believe or do something, even though it may not be true or useful any longer
cling to the hope/belief/idea etc (that)
He clung to the hope that she would be cured.
to stay in a position of power or stay ahead, when this is difficult, or to try to do this:
an attempt to cling to power