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  1. present participle of heave


heaving (comparative more heaving, superlative most heaving)

  1. (informal) Crowded with people.
    • 2006, Tim Downie, "Ride Report: Bealach-na-Ba", uk.rec.cycling [1]
      Kinlochewe was heaving with cyclists and their vehicles on Saturday morning but somehow, the organisers had found space for everyone and the main roads were kept clear.
    • 2006, "Krusty", "Krusty's Holiday", uk.rec.motorcycles, [2]
      The pool was heaving with screaming kids. By contrast the beach was virtually deserted, apart from the one day a cruise ship docked & a group of about 10 people appeared.
    • 2007, "Jamie", "Hyde Park Calling 2007", "classic rock magazine readers", [3]
      At this time it was pissing down and by the time Joe Satriani came on the tent was heaving with people just coming in to keep dry.
    • 2022 February 23, Paul Clifton, “A demand for family-friendly trains”, in RAIL, number 951, page 40:
      "You know what Paddington is like when it's absolutely heaving. There is nowhere for kids. You're holding their hands, you're holding the luggage, you're trying to move the pram, you're working out where to go. It really is quite stressful.


heaving (plural heavings)

  1. An occasion on which something heaves or is heaved.
    • 1884, Edgar Allan Poe, The Raven[4]:
      No swellings tell that winds may be Upon some far-off happier sea-- No heavings hint that winds have been On seas less hideously serene."
    • 1893, Thomas De Quincey, The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. II (2 vols)[5]:
      His throne rocked with subterraneous heavings.
    • 1895, Owen Wister, The Dragon of Wantley[6]:
      Then he set the jug down wrong side up, and remained glaring at it fixedly, while his chest rose and fell in deep heavings.

Related terms[edit]