loom(redirected from looming)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Related to looming: thesaurus
To seem imminent and cause worry or unease. We all started working much faster once the deadline loomed large on the horizon.
loom out of (something)
To be or become visible by piercing or penetrating some thick, blanketing thing, such as fog, shadow, mist, etc. A huge hooded figure loomed out of the shadows, wielding a knife and demanding that we give him our wallets. The gigantic mountain looms out of the blanket of clouds like an ancient titan.
1. To become visible by or as by rising up from some point or source. The huge, imposing monument loomed up as we drove toward the city. A huge hooded figure loomed up from the shadows, wielding a knife and demanding that we give him our wallets.
2. To become nearer in time, causing dread or anxiety in the process. With the deadline looming up, I grew more and more panicked about what I was going to write.
3. To become more definite or probable, typically in a threatening way. With a government shutdown looming up, congress scrambled to pass a budget that satisfied both political parties' demands.
loom large (on the horizon)
Cliché to be of great importance, especially when referring to an upcoming problem, danger, or threat. The exams were looming large on the horizon. Eviction was looming large when the tenants could not pay their rent.
loom out of something
to appear to come out of or penetrate something. A truck suddenly loomed out of the fog and just missed hitting us. A tall building loomed out of the mists.
to appear to rise up [from somewhere]; to take form or definition, usually threatening to some degree. A great city loomed up in the distance. It looked threatening in the dusky light. A ghost loomed up, but we paid no attention, since it had to be a joke. The recession loomed up, and the stock market reacted.
Appear imminent in a threatening, magnified form. For example, The possibility of civil war loomed large on the horizon, or Martha wanted to take it easy for a week, but the bar exam loomed large. This term employs loom in the sense of "come into view," a usage dating from the late 1500s.