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granny

or gran·nie

[gran-ee]
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noun, plural gran·nies.
  1. Informal. a grandmother.
  2. an elderly woman.
  3. a fussy person.
  4. Chiefly Midland and Southern U.S. a nurse or midwife.
  5. granny knot.
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adjective, gran·ni·er, gran·ni·est for 6.
  1. of, relating to, or thought to be like a grandmother or an elderly or old-fashioned woman: granny notions about what's proper.
  2. (of clothing for women or girls) being loose-fitted and having such features as high necklines, puff sleeves, long skirts, and ruffles and lace trimmings: a granny blouse; a granny nightgown.
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Origin of granny

1655–65; grand(mother) + -y2, with -nd- > -nn-
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

matriarchancestorgrannygrandmadowagergramsquarefogystick-in-the-mudfusspotdotardmotherfussbudget

Examples from the Web for granny

Contemporary Examples

Historical Examples

  • So I will, plase your honour, my lard; sure I've a right to know, for she's my own granny.

  • Oh, how glad you must have felt when you saw him home again, safe and sound, dear granny.

    Georgie's Present

    Miss Brightwell

  • Granny signs to the Colonel and he immediately says, with remarkable cunning, 'Oh—that!

    Echoes of the War

    J. M. Barrie

  • He looks triumphantly at granny as much as to say, 'Observe me; I'm not going to say a word about him.'

    Echoes of the War

    J. M. Barrie

  • Granny signs to them to go, and Barbara, kisses both the Colonel's hands.

    Echoes of the War

    J. M. Barrie


British Dictionary definitions for granny

granny

grannie

noun plural -nies
  1. informal words for grandmother
  2. informal an irritatingly fussy person
  3. a revolving cap on a chimneypot that keeps out rain, etc
  4. Southern US a midwife or nurse
  5. See granny knot
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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 granny

n.

1660s, according to OED, most likely a diminutive and contraction of grannam, shortened form of grandame, rather than from grandmother. The sailor's granny knot (by 1803, originally granny's knot, so called because "it is the natural knot tied by women or landsmen" [Smyth, "Sailor's Word-Book," 1867]. Granny Smith apples (1895) named for Maria Ann Smith (d.1870) of Australia, who originated them.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper