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Date: 1200-1300
Origin: Perhaps from Old English cringan 'to give up'

cringe

verb
     
cringe [intransitive]
1 to move away from someone or something because you are afraid:
A stray dog was cringing by the door.
She cringed away from him.
2 to feel embarrassed by something you have said or done because you think it makes you seem silly [↪ wince]
cringe at
She cringed at the sound of her own voice.
It makes me cringe when I think how stupid I was.

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