Loiter Definition

loitered, loitering, loiters
loitered, loitering, loiters
To linger in an aimless way; spend time idly.
Webster's New World
To spend (time) idly.
Loitered away the day.
Webster's New World
To violate a law or ordinance that prohibits persons from remaining in a given location without a clear purpose for an extended period of time, especially when behaving in a manner indicating a possible threat to persons or property in the vicinity.
American Heritage
To walk or move slowly and indolently, with frequent stops and pauses; often, specif., to linger aimlessly in a public place.
Webster's New World
To hover over or remain near an area.
Fog loitered over the mountains. A jet loitered in the sky near the airbase.
American Heritage

Origin of Loiter

  • From Middle English loitren, from Middle Dutch loteren (“to shake, wag, wobble"), ultimately connected with a frequentative form of Proto-Germanic *lÅ«tanÄ… (“to bend, stoop, cower, shrink from, decline"), see lout. Cognate with Modern Dutch leuteren (“to dawdle"), Swiss German lottern (“to wobble"), German Lotterbube (“rascal"). More at lout, little.

    From Wiktionary

  • Middle English loitren probably from Middle Dutch loteren to totter, be loose

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

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