Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • intransitive verb To climb with difficulty, especially on all fours; scramble.
  • noun A difficult, awkward climb.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To climb, especially with difficulty or by using both hands and feet, as in ascending a steep mountain: often used figuratively.
  • To ascend by climbing; climb with difficulty.
  • noun The act of clambering or climbing with difficulty.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun The act of clambering.
  • intransitive verb To climb with difficulty, or with hands and feet; -- also used figuratively.
  • transitive verb To ascend by climbing with difficulty.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb To climb something with some difficulty, or in a haphazard fashion.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun an awkward climb
  • verb climb awkwardly, as if by scrambling

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English clambren, probably frequentative of climben, to climb; see climb.]

Examples

  • The clamber was a perilous one, especially as the heavy rain rendered the iron pipe more than usually slippery.

    Kilgorman A Story of Ireland in 1798

  • Anyone who uses the word "clamber," and correctly no less, in a cycling blog has earned the right to call himself a snob.

    Prize Fighting: Knuckle Down to Win

  • We are the reluctant inheritors of a tradition that once corralled hundreds of thousands of young men into a place so that they might selflessly clamber out of trench lines to certain death.

    Michael Vlahos: Chilean Transcendence

  • Missiles launched from catapults in the hills above, javelins thrown by Persian soldiers, and arrows from thousands of archers fell like rain on the Macedonians as they tried to clamber up the snow-covered cliffs to get at the defenders.

    Alexander the Great

  • The attempt was well intended, but before he could clamber on board he was wet to the waist.

    THE MEAT

  • After a day of rest on middle Sunday another Wimbledon eccentricity, all 32 men and women remaining in the singles draws clamber back to the lawns, anxious and refreshed, to fight for a spot in the quarterfinals.

    On Wimbledon's 'Second Monday,' Everyone in the Draw Has to Play

  • Each time a new position requires me to create a space between myself and the floor, he comes whizzing by, looking at me while smiling and trying to slide underneath my torso or clamber over my legs.

    Chicken Soup for the Soul: New Moms

  • With his skull "shot to atoms", Harry manages to clamber over the side and tries to swim ashore.

    Historic walking trails: smugglers' routes in Cornwall

  • The girls clamber from their seats, toward the open windows, as Seena tries unsuccessfully to open the window nearest her.

    Amaryllis in Blueberry

  • Just then the white-domed heads of two men in coveralls appeared over the rim of the hollow, and the others stepped back to let them clamber out.

    The Priest

Comments

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  • For, tho he cannot fly, he is an excellent clamberer. (from Christopher Smart's Jubilate Agno)

    December 31, 2007

  • Ah, Jeffrey!

    December 31, 2007