noun British.

the act of complaining or whimpering.

Origin of grizzling


[griz-uh l]

verb (used with or without object), griz·zled, griz·zling.

to make or become gray or partly gray.


gray; grayish; devoid of hue.


gray or partly gray hair.
a gray wig.

Origin of grizzle

1350–1400; Middle English grisel < Old French, derivative of gris gray < Germanic; see griseous


[griz-uh l]

verb (used without object), griz·zled, griz·zling. British.

to complain; whimper; whine.
to laugh or grin in mockery; sneer.

Origin of grizzle

1740–50; origin uncertain; compare Middle High German grisgramen to gnash one's teeth, German Griesgram sourpuss
Related formsgriz·zler, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for grizzling

Historical Examples of grizzling

  • Pity to disturb him for the sake of them grizzling conductors.

  • But there was no time for grizzling then, for the game had to go on.

  • Who would think of looking back and grizzling over a little disappointment twelve years old!

    A Question of Marriage

    Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey

  • The nearly black or the darkest birds are quite likely to show some white or grizzling on the head.

    Ducks and Geese

    Harry M. Lamon

  • He did as soon as Alice said that about whining and grizzling being below the dignity of a Manciple.

British Dictionary definitions for grizzling




to make or become grey


a grey colour
grey or partly grey hair
a grey wig

Word Origin for grizzle

C15: from Old French grisel, from gris, of Germanic origin; compare Middle High German grīs grey



verb (intr) informal, mainly British

(esp of a child) to fret; whine
to sulk or grumble
Derived Formsgrizzler, noun

Word Origin for grizzle

C18: of Germanic origin; compare Old High German grist-grimmōn gnashing of teeth, German Griesgram unpleasant person
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 grizzling



"gray-colored," early 15c., from Old French grisel (see grizzled) which also meant "gray-haired old man" (a noun sense recorded in Middle English from mid-14c.). The verb, "to make gray," is attested from 1740.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper