or nurl

[ nurl ]
/ nɜrl /


a small ridge or bead, especially one of a series, as on a button for decoration or on the edge of a thumbscrew to assist in obtaining a firm grip.
a knur.

verb (used with object)

to make knurls or ridges on.

Nearby words

  1. knucklehead,
  2. knuckly,
  3. knudsen,
  4. knulling,
  5. knur,
  6. knurl toe,
  7. knurled,
  8. knurling,
  9. knurly,
  10. knussen

Origin of knurl

1600–10; earlier knurle (noun). See knur, -le Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for knurl



/ (nɜːl) /

verb (tr)

to impress with a series of fine ridges or serrations


a small ridge, esp one of a series providing a rough surface that can be gripped

Word Origin for knurl

C17: probably from knur

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 knurl



"hard excrescence," c.1600, probably a diminutive of Middle English knor "knot" (c.1400), related to gnarl, from Proto-Germanic *knur- (cf. German knorren "a knotty excrescence"). Related: Knurly.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper