strag·gle / ˈstragəl/ • v. [intr.] move along slowly, typically in a small irregular group, so as to remain some distance behind the person or people in front: half the men were already straggling back into the building | [as adj.] (straggling) the straggling crowd of refugees. ∎ grow, spread, or be laid out in an irregular, untidy way: her hair was straggling over her eyes.• n. an untidy or irregularly arranged mass or group of something: a straggle of cottages.DERIVATIVES: strag·gler / ˈstrag(ə)lər/ n.strag·gly / ˈstrag(ə)lē/ adj.