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Synonyms of linger in English:


  • 1 the crowd lingered for a long time, until it was almost dark
    loiter, dawdle, dally, take one's time, lag behind, straggle, dither, potter about/around/round, pause;
    informal dilly-dally, stick around, hang around/round, hang on, hang back
    archaic or literary tarry
    [Antonyms] leave
  • 2 the infection can linger for many years ten years later, the memory lingers on
    be protracted, endure, carry on, last, keep on/up, hold;
    [Antonyms] vanish, disappear
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    linger, loiter, dawdle
    The idea common to these words is that of prolonging an activity or staying longer than necessary.A person may linger somewhere because they are enjoying being there, not merely because they are wasting time ( just linger over your coffee and liqueurs). If something such as a person's fingers, eyes, or look linger, they stay in one place for a long time ( her fingers linger on his | Merrill's gaze lingered on his mouth). Linger is also used of something, typically an abstract noun, that lasts longer than normal or expected ( the memory lingered on); the adjectival form lingering is often used in this sense ( a lingering death).Loiter is always used in a spatial sense: it is to stay somewhere too long and typically be up to no good ( teenagers loitering in front of a newsagent's, drinking shandy and smoking).Dawdling is normally used of slow, idle movement ( a handful of people crossed the square, dawdling on their way home) and often implies that someone is wasting time ( don't dawdle over your breakfast).
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