verb (used without object)
  1. to gnash the teeth.
  1. an act of gnashing.

Origin of gnash

1490–1500; variant of obsolete gnast, Middle English gnasten; compare Old Norse gnastan gnashing of teeth
Related formsgnash·ing·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for gnashed

grate, crush, clamp, rub, grit

Examples from the Web for gnashed

Contemporary Examples of gnashed

Historical Examples of gnashed

  • She gnashed her white tusks, and dug into the sand with her brazen claws.

    The Gorgon's Head

    Nathaniel Hawthorne

  • They gnashed their teeth silently, and clutched their swords under their coats.

    Japanese Fairy World

    William Elliot Griffis

  • Maddened at this direct accusation, the Sanhedrists "gnashed on him with their teeth."

    Jesus the Christ

    James Edward Talmage

  • Rage could not speak, but gnashed his teeth and stamped his feet.

    The Infernal Marriage

    Benjamin Disraeli

  • She gnashed her white tusks and dug into the sand with her brazen claws.

British Dictionary definitions for gnashed


  1. to grind (the teeth) together, as in pain or anger
  2. (tr) to bite or chew as by grinding the teeth
  1. the act of gnashing the teeth
Derived Formsgnashingly, adverb

Word Origin for gnash

C15: probably of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Norse gnastan gnashing of teeth, gnesta to clatter
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 gnashed



early 15c., variant of Middle English gnasten "to gnash the teeth" (c.1300), perhaps from Old Norse gnastan "a gnashing," of unknown origin, probably imitative. Cf. German knistern "to crackle." Related: Gnashed; gnashing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper