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

  • noun A fawning underling; a toady.

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

  • noun by extension The practice of giving empty flattery for personal gain.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

A compounding: lick ("pass one’s tongue over") + spittle ("saliva"); the verb may derive by back-formation from the nominal derivation lickspittling (see below).


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  • Gates is Reaganaut lickspittle, which is not a step up from Nixon lickspittle.

    Think Progress » Gates called for direct talks with Iran. 2006

  • So yes, I can understand not wanting to use the tube, avoiding the tube, avoid the subject, avoid facing that you will always be 'other' - because our society in the west demands individuality....but in very narrow margins, and you like playing with the individuality they allow you like lickspittle which is why I also think you hate the tube so much.

    My shotgun wedding: no going back Elizabeth McClung 2009

  • That delightful word 'lickspittle' must have been coined with him in mind.

    Ed Balls: You're Either For Us Or Against Us 2007

  • Such epithets as "lickspittle," "toad," "carcass blown with the putrefying gas of its own importance," were read in the body of narration.

    The Rules of the Game Stewart Edward White 1909

  • Philip Davies called the Liberal Democrats "lickspittle Euro-fanatics".

    The Eurosceptics have taken over the asylum | Simon Hoggart's sketch 2011

  • I trust that that will not be enough to satisfy his electors and that another lickspittle Labour MP will lose his seat.

    Labour MPs in West London have just added another nail to their political coffins (Stephen Pound update) Not a sheep 2009

  • The movie's Madoff manqué is a shifty financier named Arthur Shaw (a perfectly unctuous Alan Alda), who occupies the penthouse of "The Tower"—a building that, in keeping with the film's fidelity to understatement, is actually the Trump International Hotel & Tower on Manhattan's Columbus Circle, a luxury dwelling where a staff, led by chief lickspittle Josh Kovacs (Ben Stiller), pampers a plush population.

    Crime Comedy 'Heist' Lacks Conviction John Anderson 2011

  • The Queen approves the wearing of medals awarded whilst serving in the Forces, surely only she can stop them from being worn and not on the whim of some desk bound * % $%£ lickspittle who only got to that position by crawling up superiors arses? on February 10, 2010 at 9: 22 am Ranter

    Why front-line police officers are glad about Dizaei « POLICE INSPECTOR BLOG Inspector Gadget 2010

  • In that sense Labour and its lickspittle claque of hangers-on has done us all a great service and has ensured that Mr. Wilders and his views get enormous publicity.

    The Home Secretary Is Also Stupid 2009

  • In that sense Labour and its lickspittle claque of hangers-on has done us all a great service and has ensured that Mr. Wilders and his views get enormous publicity.

    Archive 2009-02-08 2009


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  • this word is so gross.

    March 3, 2007

  • I agree. I'd rather call someone an abject flatterer (dictionary definition).

    March 3, 2007

  • My daughters use this word to describe our kitten when she licks the inside of her bed, as if she is nursing from her mother. We had no idea it was used another way!

    February 4, 2015