\ˈnär(-ə)ld \

Definition of gnarled 

1 : full of knots or gnarls : knotty gnarled hands gnarled olive trees

2 : crabbed in disposition, aspect, or character a gnarled old veteran

Examples of gnarled in a Sentence

the old man's gnarled fingers

Recent Examples on the Web

With wide, cylindrical trunks and gnarled branches, the trees appear to have been yanked out of the ground, flipped over and shoved back in, roots in the air. Amina Khan,, "Africa's baobab trees can live for more than 1,000 years, but the oldest and largest of them are dying," 11 June 2018 Most notably, a large, gnarled tree in the wooded area known as Squirrels Inn toppled. Author: Kat Sorensen, Anchorage Daily News, "Mount Marathon race trail has it all: snow, lush vegetation, flowing water and lots of dust," 3 July 2018 As a native of San Luis Obispo County, my notion of great trees consisted of gnarled coast live oaks crowning golden-grassed hills. Robert Earle Howells,, "Should we hide the locations of Earth’s greatest trees?," 3 July 2018 Some wave their tentacles from holes in the gnarled stems, like flowers at a mermaid’s wedding. Joanna Klein, New York Times, "This Coral Must Die," 25 June 2018 There are an array of diseased body parts, gnarled bones and odd surgical instruments. Ed Condran,, "Philadelphia Emerges As Colorful Travel Destination," 24 June 2018 These twisted, gnarled and weathered pines have been dated at nearly 5,000 years old. Ernie Cowan,, "Wonders await in the White Mountains," 16 June 2018 The head weighs a little over two pounds and easily cuts through gnarled wood. Emily Reed, Outside Online, "How to Build Your Perfect Car Camping Box," 12 June 2018 Once lined with the gnarled trunks and silvery-green foliage of olive trees, the area has been stripped nearly bare. Griff Witte, Washington Post, "Conditions are horrific at Greece’s ‘island prisons’ for refugees. Is that the point?," 15 Jan. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gnarled.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of gnarled

1603, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for gnarled

probably alteration of knurled

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Dictionary Entries near gnarled

gnaphalium green






gnash one's teeth

Statistics for gnarled

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Time Traveler for gnarled

The first known use of gnarled was in 1603

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English Language Learners Definition of gnarled

of wood : having many twists and hard bumps or knots

: bumpy or twisted


\ˈnärld \

Kids Definition of gnarled

: being twisted, rugged, or full of knots a gnarled old oak tree

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More from Merriam-Webster on gnarled

Spanish Central: Translation of gnarled

Nglish: Translation of gnarled for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gnarled for Arabic Speakers

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a state of commotion or excitement

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