Definitions

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

  • adj. Biology Creeping or crawling; repent.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Creeping along the ground.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Same as Repent.
  • adj. Creeping; crawling; -- said of reptiles, worms, etc.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Creeping or crawling; repent; reptatory; reptile; specifically, of or pertaining to the Reptantia.

Etymologies

Latin rēptāns, rēptant-, present participle of rēptāre, to creep, frequentative of rēpere.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin rēptō ("I creep"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Of cozeners, that haunt this occupation, that they cannot well tell how to live one by another, but as he jested in the Comedy of Clocks, they were so many, [2027] major pars populi arida reptant fame, they are almost starved a great part of them, and ready to devour their fellows,

    Anatomy of Melancholy

  • Pulcherrima eft fepibus vivis in hortis, cuift inter topiarias noftrates nequaquam ultimo loco fit habenda, femperque virefcit: Difficilis eft transplan* tatu, quoniam fibrofae ejus radices valde fe expan - dunt, & fub fuperficie 4: erra2 reptant; cum vero fe* mel vel bis transpofita eft., facillime deinde trans - plan -

    Caroli a Linné equit. aur. de stella polari archiatri regii med. et botan. profess. Upsal. Acad ...

Comments

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  • "The tone of this voice—I've studied it in considerable depth—reproduces in sound the approximate impression made on the eye of the progress of a snail, so resplendently languorous, so lazy, so brown, so very reptant, so slimy, so gluey, and so terribly if-not-today-why-not-tomorrow."
    Berlin Stories by Robert Walser, translated by Susan Bernofsky, pp 48-49 of the NYRB paperback

    May 9, 2012

  • " It meticulously dissects the myriad protean tricks authoritarianism employs to maneuver its subjects into place and keep them there. Access to information and accountability for one's conduct are essential for the brave new world that might emerge if the reptant strain of authoritarianism in humankind does not destroy this world first in the name of knowing better." (from a review, on Amazon.com by Ford Greene, Esq., of The Guru Papers: Masks of Authoritarian Power)

    February 25, 2010