grovel

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grovel

(1)
To work interminably and without apparent progress. Often used transitively with "over" or "through". "The file scavenger has been groveling through the /usr directories for 10 minutes now." Compare grind and crunch. Emphatic form: "grovel obscenely".

grovel

(2)
To examine minutely or in complete detail. "The compiler grovels over the entire source program before beginning to translate it." "I grovelled through all the documentation, but I still couldn't find the command I wanted."
References in classic literature ?
He grovelled in the mire and besought them, calling each one of them by his name.
It grovelled helpless on the ground, even while his intellectual faculties retained their pristine strength, or had perhaps acquired a morbid energy, which disease only could have given them.
The colour went from their six faces like enchantment; some leaped to their feet, some clawed hold of others; Morgan grovelled on the ground.