• WordNet 3.6
    • n straggler someone who strays or falls behind
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Straggler A roving vagabond.
    • Straggler One who straggles, or departs from the direct or proper course, or from the company to which he belongs; one who falls behind the rest; one who rambles without any settled direction.
    • Straggler Something that shoots, or spreads out, beyond the rest, or too far; an exuberant growth. "Let thy hand supply the pruning knife,
      And crop luxuriant stragglers ."
    • Straggler Something that stands alone or by itself.
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n straggler One who straggles or strays away, as from his fellows or from the direct or proper course; one who lags behind or becomes separated in any way from his companions, as from a body of troops on the march.
    • n straggler Specifically, in ornithology, a stray, or strayed bird, out of its usual range, or off its regular migration. The stragglers are the casual or accidental visitants in any avifauna. In the nature of the case they are never numerous as regards individuals; but the list of what are technically called stragglers in any region or locality usually becomes, in the course of time, a long one, so far as species are concerned. Thus, in the avifauna of the District of Columbia, the stragglers are about as many species as the regular visitants of either summer or winter, or the permanent residents of the year round, though fewer than the spring and autumn migrants.
    • n straggler One who roams or wanders about at random, or without settled direction or object; a wanderer; a vagabond; especially, a wandering, shiftless fellow; a tramp.
    • n straggler Something that shoots beyond the rest or too far; an exuberant growth.
    • n straggler Something that stands apart from others; a solitary or isolated individual.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • ns Straggler one who straggles from the course: a wandering fellow: a vagabond: a migratory animal found away from its usual range
    • ***


Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
For strackle, freq. of M. E. straken—A.S. strícan, to go.


In literature:

Stragglers were hastening along close to the walls, and there were soldiers who had forgot to bring their guns from the elephant arena.
"The Adventures of Kathlyn" by Harold MacGrath
The Cossacks had by this time gathered hard behind, and swept up many stragglers, besides the sick.
"The History of Napoleon Buonaparte" by John Gibson Lockhart
The only stragglers were those who fell out to give up to the frost their exhausted souls.
"The Point Of Honor A Military Tale" by Joseph Conrad
The only danger of observation lay in some straggler along the near-by bank.
"The Devil's Own" by Randall Parrish
Our Cossacks either killed the stragglers or else let them alone, just as it happened.
"Tales Of Hearsay" by Joseph Conrad
A few of the enemy hovered round them, occasionally killing a straggler who fell behind.
"With Wolfe in Canada" by G. A. Henty
The stragglers of Rosas's beaten army came pouring into the town, and it became known that the Dictator, completely defeated, had fled.
"South America" by W. H. Koebel
Five hundred stragglers soon fell into their hands.
"History of the Expedition to Russia" by Count Philip de Segur
Rip stayed in the rear, watching for stragglers, but even Bradshaw was moving rapidly.
"Rip Foster in Ride the Gray Planet" by Harold Leland Goodwin
A little farther, those stragglers began to notice them.
"This World Is Taboo" by Murray Leinster

In poetry:

Thou straggler into loving arms,
Young climber up of knees,
When I forget thy thousand ways,
Then life and all shall cease.
"Parental Recollections" by Charles Lamb
Though on the field that Death has won,
She save some stragglers in retreat;--
These single acts of mercy done
Are but confessions of defeat.
"For The Meeting Of The National Sanitary Association" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
Idle minutes are his reign;
Then, the straggler makes his gain
By presenting maids with toys,
And would have ye think them joys:
'Tis the ambition of the elf
To have all childish as himself.
"Venus' Runaway" by Ben Jonson
How narrow the circle that holds us to-night!
How many the loved ones that greet us no more,
As we meet like the stragglers that come from the fight,
Like the mariners flung from a wreck on the shore!
"The Shadows" by Oliver Wendell Holmes
The days when I dreamt but of battle!—The lamp
Which all night I kept burning,—that if from the camp
One straggler should come, I might, hang up his sword
And hearken how prospered the cause of the Lord!
"At the Fords Of Jordan" by Mary Hannay Foott
Like stragglers from an army's rear
Gradual they grew, near and less near,
Till ample space was left to raise,
Amid the trees, the watch-fire's blaze;
And there, wrapt in their cloaks around,
The soldiers scatter'd o'er the ground.
"The Troubadour. Canto 2" by Letitia Elizabeth Landon

In news:

Sharing Garth Brooks' stomping ground of Stillwater, Okla. Jason Boland & The Stragglers bear surface resemblances to the many hard-driving bands the Red Dirt scene springs forth regularly.
The differences come with Jason's voice, a Waylonesque baritone that suits the Stragglers' insistent thump, and his songwriting.
Jason Boland and the Stragglers, Eleven Hundred Springs and the Mack Abernathy Band.
Study shows blue stragglers steal mass from companion stars.
After the kicked-up dust had settled in Searchlight (much of it on my glasses) and most of the RVs and pickups had started the long crawl back to civilization or suburbia, a few stragglers stuck around, in no real hurry to make an exit.
Although there are 100 or so stragglers every day and it will only be "official" in a week or so, the run of sockeye salmon up the Columbia River this summer is the highest since Bonneville Dam started operating in 1938.
I have just spent a week in Moscow with Mrs Straggler at the invitation of a Russian foundation.
Wigan beats Bolton 2-1 in stragglers' matchup.
Jason Boland and the Stragglers.
Published Thursday, Nov 15, 2012, at 3:07 p.m. Jason Boland and the Stragglers will perform Wednesday at The Cotillion.
292 people were arrested early Wednesday morning when the LAPD shut down the 8-week-old Occupy L.A. Encampment , extracting protesters from City Hall Park, including stragglers occupying trees.
At the start of the crisis, Merkel was derided by the French as " Madame Non" for refusing to approve quick aid to southern euro zone stragglers and rebuffing demands for sweeping solutions like common euro zone bonds.
On Friday morning I planted the last stragglers of annuals: three pale pink impatiens, one begonia and two dusty miller.
The US Army captains' nuptials were witnessed by 5,000 to 7,000 GI's, sailors, sailors, stragglers, non-combatants and Japanese prisoners of war.
And as the trees shed those last few colorful stragglers refusing to join the pile, we're forced to face the fact that fall is coming to an end, and the cold is here to stay.

In science:

Furthermore, stellar collisions and close encounters are believed to produce a number of non-canonical ob jects, including blue stragglers, low-mass X-ray binaries, recycled pulsars, double neutron star systems, cataclysmic variables and contact binaries.
MODEST-1: Integrating Stellar Evolution and Stellar Dynamics
Such intermediate-age stars have most recently been studied by Preston and Sneden (2000) and are likely to be blue stragglers.
Young stars at large distances from the galactic plane: mechanisms of formation
These four groups include almost all known sungrazing comets (except 35 “stragglers”).
Are the sungrazing comets the inner source of pickup ions and energetic neutral atoms?
Ter 5 P, the fourth fastest MSP known, is unusual and most similar to the binary MSP NGC 6397 A, whose peculiar red straggler or sub-subgiant companion causes irregular and long-duration eclipses of the radio pulses (8).
Twenty-One Millisecond Pulsars in Terzan 5 Using the Green Bank Telescope
One pair in their sample, HD 113984, displays a difference in [Fe/H] of 0.27 dex, but the primary is a blue straggler.
The Chemical Compositions of Stars with Planets: A Review