displaying or reflecting reluctance or unwillingness: grudging acceptance of the victory of an opponent.

Origin of grudging

1375–1425; late Middle English. See grudge, -ing2
Related formsgrudg·ing·ly, adverb




a feeling of ill will or resentment: to hold a grudge against a former opponent.


done, arranged, etc., in order to settle a grudge: The middleweight fight was said to be a grudge match.

verb (used with object), grudged, grudg·ing.

to give or permit with reluctance; submit to unwillingly: The other team grudged us every point we scored.
to resent the good fortune of (another); begrudge.

verb (used without object), grudged, grudg·ing.

Obsolete. to feel dissatisfaction or ill will.

Origin of grudge

1400–50; late Middle English grudgen, gruggen, variant of gruchen < Old French gro(u)c(h)ier < Germanic; compare Middle High German grogezen to complain, cry out
Related formsgrudge·less, adjectivegrudg·er, nounun·grudged, adjective

Synonyms for grudge

1. bitterness, rancor, malevolence, enmity, hatred. Grudge, malice, spite refer to ill will held against another or others. A grudge is a feeling of resentment harbored because of some real or fancied wrong: to hold a grudge because of jealousy; She has a grudge against him. Malice is the state of mind that delights in doing harm, or seeing harm done, to others, whether expressing itself in an attempt seriously to injure or merely in sardonic humor: malice in watching someone's embarrassment; to tell lies about someone out of malice. Spite is petty, and often sudden, resentment that manifests itself usually in trifling retaliations: to reveal a secret out of spite. 4. envy. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Related Words for grudging

envy, pinch, covet, mind, deny, resent, refuse, begrudge, stint, complain

Examples from the Web for grudging

Contemporary Examples of grudging

Historical Examples of grudging

  • "He's a loyal kid, at that," Burke commented, with a grudging admiration.

    Within the Law

    Marvin Dana

  • Also there was a grudging note of admiration in his voice when he next spoke.


    Joseph C. Lincoln

  • And if Nature had been grudging with him, his father was not more kind.

    The Manxman

    Hall Caine

  • I reared you to the best of my powers, grudging neither pains nor expense.

    The Gods are Athirst

    Anatole France

  • Then you're no grudging us the loss of six lambs, Mr. Clark.

    The Story of Wool

    Sara Ware Bassett

British Dictionary definitions for grudging



a persistent feeling of resentment, esp one due to some cause, such as an insult or injury
(modifier) planned or carried out in order to settle a grudgea grudge fight


(tr) to give or allow unwillingly
to feel resentful or envious about (someone else's success, possessions, etc)
Derived Formsgrudgeless, adjectivegrudger, noungrudging, adjectivegrudgingly, adverb

Word Origin for grudge

C15: from Old French grouchier to grumble, probably of Germanic origin; compare Old High German grunnizōn to grunt
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 grudging



mid-15c., "to murmur, complain," variant of grutch. Meaning "to begrudge" is c.1500. Related: Grudged; grudges; grudging; grudgingly. The noun is mid-15c., from the verb.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Idioms and Phrases with grudging


see bear a grudge; nurse a grudge.

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