Definitions

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

  • noun One that crawls, especially an early form of certain insect larvae.
  • noun A vehicle, such as a bulldozer, that moves on continuous belts of metal plates.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One who or that which crawls; a creeper; a reptile.
  • noun A dobson or hellgrammite; the larva of a neuropterous insect of the family Sialidæ, as of Corydalus cornutus.
  • noun Also called clipper.
  • noun A person or thing that moves slowly; particularly, a cab that moves along a street very slowly on the outlook for a fare.

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

  • noun One who, or that which, crawls; a creeper; a reptile.

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

  • noun A child who is able to creep using his hands and knees but is not able to walk.
  • noun sports A crawl swimmer.
  • noun A tractor crawler, a motorized vehicle that uses caterpillar tracks instead of wheels.
  • noun A software bot that autonomously follows connected paths such as webpage links.
  • noun Australia, obsolete A person who is abused, physically or verbally, and returns to the abuser a supplicant.
  • noun Australia, slang A sycophant.

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

  • noun a person who tries to please someone in order to gain a personal advantage
  • noun a person who crawls or creeps along the ground
  • noun terrestrial worm that burrows into and helps aerate soil; often surfaces when the ground is cool or wet; used as bait by anglers

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From crawl (“move slowly, by dragging the body along the ground”) +‎ -er (“suffix forming agent noun”).

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From crawl (“act in a servile manner”) +‎ -er (“suffix forming agent noun”).

Examples

  • The behavior of the everest crawler is regrettable.

    MSNBot, Begone!

  • The smart crawler is to be free software under the GNU General Public License (GPL).

    Boing Boing: October 24, 2004 - October 30, 2004 Archives

  • At 10: 36 p.m. PDT, Google's "crawler" -- the technology that finds Web pages -- discovered a new link on the Web site of Tribune's South Florida Sun-Sentinel newspaper in a section called "Popular Stories: Business."

    UAL Story Blame

  • In another conciliatory gesture announced Wednesday, Google will use a separate "crawler" - which is a piece of indexing technology - to compile content for its news section.

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  • In another conciliatory gesture announced Wednesday, Google will use a separate "crawler" - which is a piece of indexing technology - to compile content for its news section.

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  • In another conciliatory gesture announced Wednesday, Google will use a separate "crawler" -- which is a piece of indexing technology -- to compile content for its news section.

    CourierPostOnline.com - News

  • In another conciliatory gesture announced Wednesday, Google will use a separate "crawler" -- which is a piece of indexing technology -- to compile content for its news section.

    CourierPostOnline.com - News

  • Plus whoever has the rights to Spider-Man would never allow him in the movie without a small fortune, so the web-crawler is out too.)

    Did Jon Favreau Just Reveal The Avengers Line-Up? « FirstShowing.net

  • Mechanics on the battlefield are built around the idea of a mobile base, called a crawler, which differs depending on which of the three classes you choose.

    Command & Conquer 4 Review | CurveHouse.com

  • The crawler is your all-in-one building, serving as your sole production structure and research center.

    Command & Conquer 4 Review | CurveHouse.com

Comments

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  • The old crawler, having scribbled through his billet-doux, restrained the luxuriance of a straggling hair or two with his tweezers; then bathed his eyes in the nostrum of some perfumer to give them a brilliancy which their natural gum would have eclipsed.

    - Lesage, The Adventures of Gil Blas of Santillane, tr. Smollett, bk 4 ch. 7

    September 18, 2008