clinging vine


Also found in: Idioms.

clinging vine

n
informal US and Canadian a woman who displays excessive emotional dependence on a man
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014

cling′ing vine′


n.
a person who behaves in a helpless and dependent manner in relationships with others.
[1960–65, Amer.]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
Translations

clinging vine

n (inf)Klette f (inf)
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007
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References in classic literature ?
We saw no semblance of a street, but every house, every window, every clinging vine, every projection was as distinct and sharply marked as if the time were noon-day; and yet there was no glare, no glitter, nothing harsh or repulsive--the noiseless city was flooded with the mellowest light that ever streamed from the moon, and seemed like some living creature wrapped in peaceful slumber.
"Your Highness," said he, "I will now proceed to prove my magic by creating two suns that you have never seen before; also I will exhibit a Destroyer much more dreadful that your Clinging Vines."
"Now, Princess," exclaimed the Wizard, "those of your advisors who wished to throw us into the Garden of Clinging Vines must step within this circle of light.
As it is evident that my people have advised me wrongly, I will not cast you three people into the dreadful Garden of the Clinging Vines; but your animals must be driven into the Black Pit in the mountain, for my subjects cannot bear to have them around."
Once they came near to the enclosed Garden of the Clinging Vines, and walking high into the air looked down upon it with much interest.
Thirty years later, only the thick walls were standing, with the dull red brick showing here and there through a matted growth of clinging vines. The huge round pillars were intact; so to some extent was the stone flagging of hall and portico.
Above him, through the aperture, Werper could see sunlight glancing from massive columns, which were twined about by clinging vines. He listened; but he heard no sound other than the soughing of the wind through leafy branches, the hoarse cries of birds, and the chattering of monkeys.
"I'll dispose of this thing back at the cabin," Doc said, freeing the can from the desiccated tendrils of a clinging vine. "Might as well leave it better than we found it."
The thing about Harry is that he's as tangled up in contradictions as the rest of us poor mortals, caught in a complex web of interdependence that he feels he might understand better if he "squinted and looked at it a certain way." But The Astral wouldn't be as brilliant as it is if it didn't sparkle with intelligently wrought irony--and so while Harry is as reliant on external support as a clinging vine, he turns out to be deeply critical of his wife's Catholicism and the ethical core she thinks it provides her, which, he feels, she lacks within herself to better understand her failings and transgressions: "I'd always felt superior to my wife because of her need for confession and prayer.
Also interesting on paper is Clinging Vine (138), a half-sister to Group 2 winner Lovers Knot.