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grit

[grit]
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noun
  1. abrasive particles or granules, as of sand or other small, coarse impurities found in the air, food, water, etc.
  2. firmness of character; indomitable spirit; pluck: She has a reputation for grit and common sense.
  3. a coarse-grained siliceous rock, usually with sharp, angular grains.
  4. British. gravel.
  5. sand or other fine grainy particles eaten by fowl to aid in digestion.
verb (used with object), grit·ted, grit·ting.
  1. to cause to grind or grate together.
verb (used without object), grit·ted, grit·ting.
  1. to make a scratchy or slightly grating sound, as of sand being walked on; grate.
Idioms
  1. grit one's teeth, to show tenseness, anger, or determination by or as if by clamping or grinding the teeth together.

Origin of grit

before 1000; Middle English gret, griet, grit, Old English grēot; cognate with German Griess, Old Norse grjōt pebble, boulder; see grits
Related formsgrit·less, adjectivegrit·ter, noun

Synonyms

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2. resolution, fortitude, courage.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
British Dictionary definitions for grit one's teeth

grit

noun
  1. small hard particles of sand, earth, stone, etc
  2. Also called: gritstone any coarse sandstone that can be used as a grindstone or millstone
  3. the texture or grain of stone
  4. indomitable courage, toughness, or resolution
  5. engineering an arbitrary measure of the size of abrasive particles used in a grinding wheel or other abrasive process
verb grits, gritting or gritted
  1. to clench or grind together (two objects, esp the teeth)
  2. to cover (a surface, such as icy roads) with grit
Derived Formsgritless, adjective

Word Origin

Old English grēot; related to Old Norse grjōt pebble, Old High German grioz; see great, groats, gruel

Grit

noun, adjective Canadian
  1. an informal word for Liberal
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for grit one's teeth

grit

n.

Old English greot "sand, dust, earth, gravel," from Proto-Germanic *greutan "tiny particles of crushed rock" (cf. Old Saxon griot, Old Frisian gret, Old Norse grjot "rock, stone," German Grieß "grit, sand"), from PIE *ghreu- "rub, grind" (cf. Lithuanian grudas "corn, kernel," Old Church Slavonic gruda "clod"). Sense of "pluck, spirit" first recorded American English, 1808.

grit

v.

"make a grating sound," 1762, probably from grit (n.). Related: Gritted; gritting.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with grit one's teeth

grit one's teeth

Summon up one's strength to face unpleasantness or overcome a difficulty. For example, Gritting his teeth, he dove into the icy water. This expression uses grit in the sense of both clamping one's teeth together and grinding them with effort. [Late 1700s]

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.