genuflect

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

PIE word
*ǵónu

From around 1620–1630 from Medieval Latin genūflectō (I bend the knee) equivalent to the Latin genū (knee) + flectō (to bend).

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

genuflect (third-person singular simple present genuflects, present participle genuflecting, simple past and past participle genuflected)

  1. (intransitive, archaic) To bend the knee, as in servitude.
  2. (intransitive) To briefly touch one knee to the ground, typically associated with religious worship.
  3. (intransitive, figuratively) To behave in a servile manner; to grovel.
    • 2017 September 27, Julianne Tveten, “Zucktown, USA”, in The Baffler[1]:
      Certainly, the megalomaniacs who aim to populate municipal fixtures with registered-trademark logos will expect cities to genuflect at every turn.

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