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I felt the smile creep onto my face. What does smile creep mean? What about synonyms?

migrated from english.stackexchange.com Feb 7 '14 at 23:43

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  • youtube.com/watch?v=-oehGtcW6BU – Evan M Feb 7 '14 at 23:14
  • -1 for a question that could have been answered by looking in a dictionary or thesaurus – Leon Conrad Feb 7 '14 at 23:19
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    Er, me feeling a smile creep onto my face is okay; but it is really creepy if someone else's smile ("the smile") is creeping onto my face! Ugh! – F.E. Feb 7 '14 at 23:24
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    Im just translating the text, so it is not my own phrase. – Polli Feb 7 '14 at 23:33
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    @Leon Conrad: I think the problem (for a non native speaker) is in the parsing of the sentence, not the meaning of the word. – Tom Au Feb 7 '14 at 23:49
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This is an expression that describes the lips slowly moving into a smile. Usually used in a literary context to indicate that some realisation or understanding is dawning upon the protagonist.

  • Or dawning on the antagonist... – J.R. Feb 9 '14 at 0:36
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"Smile creep" is not a noun. You do not use it in the same sense as "I felt the CREME on my face."

Shorten the phrase to "The smile creeps onto my face." and it makes more sense. Subject= smile, verb= creeps, "my face" is the object.

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Creep = to move slowly.

So the above sentence means, essentially, "I felt the smile move slowly onto my face"

Another example: I had to creep quietly into the room to keep from waking the baby.

  • A few more (more metaphorical) examples: ivy can creep up a wall, a shadow can creep over the landscape, and a sense of fear can creep into our souls. – J.R. Feb 9 '14 at 1:44

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