Definitions

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

  • transitive verb To press or pinch into small regular folds or ridges.
  • transitive verb To bend or mold (leather) into shape.
  • transitive verb To cause (hair) to form tight curls or waves.
  • transitive verb To have a hampering or obstructive effect on.
  • noun The act of crimping.
  • noun Something made by or as if by crimping, as.
  • noun Hair that has been tightly curled or waved.
  • noun A series of curls, as of wool fibers.
  • noun A crease or bend.
  • noun An obstructing or hampering agent or force.
  • noun A person who tricks or coerces others into service as sailors or soldiers.
  • transitive verb To procure (sailors or soldiers) by trickery or coercion.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To bend back or inward; draw together; contract or cause to contract or shrink; corrugate. Specifically
  • To bend (the uppers of boots) into shape.
  • To indent (a cartridge-case), or turn the end inward and back upon the head, in order to confine the charge; crease.
  • To cause to contract and pucker so as to become wrinkled, wavy, or crisped, as the hair; form into short curls or ruffles; flute; ruffle.
  • In cookery, to crimple or cause to contract or wrinkle, as the flesh of a live fish or of one just killed, by gashing it with a knife, to give it greater firmness and make it more crisp when cooked.
  • To pinch and hold; seize.
  • To kidnap; decoy for the purpose of shipping or enlisting, as into the army or navy. See the extract.
  • To be very stingy.
  • noun That which has been crimped or curled; a curl or a waved lock of hair: generally used in the plural.
  • noun A crimper.
  • noun One who brings persons into a place or condition of restraint, in order to subject them to swindling, forced labor, or the like; especially, one who, for a commission, supplies recruits for the army or sailors for ships by nefarious means or false inducements; a decoy; a kidnapper. Such practices have been suppressed in the army and navy, and made highly penal in connection with merchant ships.
  • noun A certain game at cards.
  • Easily crumbled; friable; brittle; crisp.
  • Not consistent; contradictory.

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

  • adjective rare Easily crumbled; friable; brittle.
  • adjective rare Weak; inconsistent; contradictory.
  • transitive verb To fold or plait in regular undulation in such a way that the material will retain the shape intended; to give a wavy appearance to. Cf. crisp.
  • transitive verb To pinch and hold; to seize.
  • transitive verb to entrap into the military or naval service.
  • transitive verb (Cookery) To cause to contract, or to render more crisp, as the flesh of a fish, by gashing it, when living, with a knife
  • transitive verb (Firearms) In cartridge making, to fold the edge of (a cartridge case) inward so as to close the mouth partly and confine the charge.
  • transitive verb a low lodging house, into which men are decoyed and plied with drink, to induce them to ship or enlist as sailors or soldiers.
  • transitive verb A crimping machine.
  • transitive verb a machine with fluted rollers or with dies, for crimping ruffles, leather, iron, etc.
  • transitive verb an instrument for crimping or puckering the border of a lady's cap.
  • noun Prov. Eng. A coal broker.
  • noun One who decoys or entraps men into the military or naval service.
  • noun A keeper of a low lodging house where sailors and emigrants are entrapped and fleeced.
  • noun Hair which has been crimped; -- usually in pl.
  • noun obsolete A game at cards.
  • noun See under Boot.

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

  • verb To impress (seamen or soldiers); to entrap, to decoy.
  • adjective obsolete Easily crumbled; friable; brittle.
  • adjective obsolete Weak; inconsistent; contradictory.
  • noun A fastener or a fastening method that secures parts by bending metal around a joint and squeezing it together, often with a tool that adds indentations to capture the parts.
  • noun obsolete, UK, dialect A coal broker.
  • noun obsolete One who decoys or entraps men into the military or naval service.
  • noun obsolete A keeper of a low lodging house where sailors and emigrants are entrapped and fleeced.

Etymologies

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

[Dutch or Low German krimpen, from Middle Dutch or Middle Low German.]

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

[Origin unknown.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Middle English crempen, from Proto-Germanic *krimpanan.

Examples

  • But they said the increased stability of the entire system would be worth any short-term crimp in lending.

    Regulators meeting in Switzerland agree on new global rules to strengthen banks

  • But they said the increased stability of the entire system would be worth any short-term crimp in lending.

    Regulators meeting in Switzerland agree on new global rules to strengthen banks

  • A crimp was a contractor, a man paid so much a head for recruits, and Lieutenant Colonel Girdwood and Sir Henry Simmerson had turned the Second Battalion of the South Essex into just such a contractor!

    Sharpe's Regiment

  • Feb. 9 Bloomberg -- Toyota Motor Corp., the world's largest carmaker, may trail Honda Motor Co. in profit for a third straight year as lingering consumer concerns over recalls crimp its recovery.

    BusinessWeek.com -- Top News

  • Market Share, Fall Behind Ford as Recall Costs Sales Toyota Motor Corp. may lose U.S. market share this year as recalls crimp sales, falling to third place after Ford Motor Co. retakes the No. 2 spot, auto researcher Edmunds. com said.

    Bloomberg

  • Market Share, Fall Behind Ford as Recall Costs Sales Toyota Motor Corp. may lose U.S. market share this year as recalls crimp sales, falling to third place after Ford Motor Co. retakes the No. 2 spot, auto researcher Edmunds. com said.

    Bloomberg

  • Feb. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Toyota Motor Corp. may lose U.S. market share this year as recalls crimp sales, falling to third place after Ford Motor Co. retakes the No. 2 spot, auto researcher Edmunds. com said.

    BusinessWeek.com --

  • Feb. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Toyota Motor Corp. may lose U.S. market share this year as recalls crimp sales, falling to third place after Ford Motor Co. retakes the No. 2 spot, auto researcher Edmunds. com said.

    BusinessWeek.com --

  • The only real 'crimp' in the two-hour visit was the dreaded nappy (diaper) change, which he's not a big fan of anyway; throw in a semi-stranger, and, well … Mexican stand-off ensued apparently.

    They Don't Always Do What You Expect

  • In the first place, "crimp" is incorrect in such usage.

    "I do not enjoy the suggestion that you have a better ear or eye for how I want my words to read than I do."

Comments

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  • I didn't know the "A person who tricks or coerces others into service as sailors or soldiers" definition of this word, but that's how Philip Pullman uses it, here, though he's using it more generally as "a person who tricks or coerces others":

    ""Where are the crimps working from?" said Goldberg.

    "Off the Pier Head, sir. St. Katharine's Basin. See, there's sixty, maybe seventy people to come ashore, maybe more. They offload 'em at the Pier Head, then they can get away straight up Little Thames Street. You seen all them cabs? The cabmen got wind of this trade in the last month or so. They put a copper there regular now, to control 'em. There was nearly a hundred there last week."

    He pushed off, then slipped the oars into the oarlocks and started to pull away with short, light strokes.

    "What are crimps?" said Sally.

    "Parasites," said Goldbergs. "Swindlers. Minor criminals. Those vultures you saw back there.""

    The Tiger in the Well by Philip Pullman, p 237 of the Dell/Laurel-Leaf paperback

    August 12, 2011

  • "One who brings persons into a place or condition of restraint, in order to subject them to swindling, forced labor, or the like; especially, one who, for a commission, supplies recruits for the army or sailors for ships by nefarious means or false inducements; a decoy; a kidnapper. Such practices have been suppressed in the army and navy, and made highly penal in connection with merchant ships."

    -- From The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

    December 13, 2018