\ ˈgrāt How to pronounce grate (audio) \

Definition of grate

 (Entry 1 of 3)

2a : a barred frame for cooking over a fire
b : a frame or bed of iron bars to hold a stove or furnace fire
c : fireplace
3 obsolete : cage, prison


verb (1)
grated; grating

Definition of grate (Entry 2 of 3)

transitive verb

: to furnish with a grate the lower windows were grated


verb (2)
grated; grating

Definition of grate (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to reduce to small particles by rubbing on something rough grate cheese
2 : fret, irritate
3a : to gnash or grind noisily
b : to cause to make a rasping sound
c : to utter in a harsh voice
4 archaic : abrade

intransitive verb

1 : to rub or rasp noisily metal grating against metal
2 : to cause irritation : jar a voice that grates on the nerves

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Other Words from grate

Verb (2)

grater noun
gratingly \ ˈgrā-​tiŋ-​lē How to pronounce grate (audio) \ adverb

Examples of grate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Several ducklings had fallen through a storm grate. From Usa Today Network And Wire Reports, USA TODAY, 1 July 2021 Grill ingredients over direct heat until the bottoms release naturally from the grate, then flip and cook until the outsides are golden and speckled with char and the insides are cooked through. New York Times, 28 June 2021 And the sear zone was perhaps the easiest to use, with a slide that pulls out to expose the center of the cooking grate to the direct heat of the flame. Bradley Ford, Popular Mechanics, 25 May 2021 Place the buttered crab on the grate and cover the grill. Renee Erickson, Robb Report, 25 May 2021 Service Director Randy Garner said the sewer grate lids will be lifted off and the mats zip-tied to them. Beth Mlady, cleveland, 20 June 2021 Schnering, a 13-year veteran of the Oak Creek Police Department and owner of a dog and cat, joked she often gets sent on the animal calls with the most common recently being a duck stuck in a sewer grate. Erik S. Hanley, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 9 June 2021 Once a stop on the Underground Railroad, the system that helped escaped slaves find freedom, there was a tunnel under the cellar floor, accessed beneath a grate in the kitchen. Nancy Keates, WSJ, 9 June 2021 With a non-stick grilling basket, dad will make sure delicate morsels don’t fall through the grill grate. Jennifer Miko, Chron, 1 June 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In most big groups there will be those whose attitude or demeanor will grate upon our own sensibilities. Arkansas Online, 1 July 2021 Use a Microplane to finely grate zest limes into bowl, then halve 1 or 2 limes and squeeze in 3 tablespoons juice. Gregory Gourdet, WSJ, 13 May 2021 Then add 3 tablespoons of the olive oil and finely grate the garlic into the bowl. Christian Reynoso, San Francisco Chronicle, 11 June 2021 To use frozen butter in pie dough, grate it on the large holes of a box grater and toss with the flour (instead of cutting it in with a pastry cutter or your hands). Samantha Macavoy, Good Housekeeping, 11 Mar. 2021 And the jockeying between the White House and Republicans is beginning to grate on Democrats on Capitol Hill, following signs of impatience from the party leadership that emerged late last week. Stephen Collinson, CNN, 31 May 2021 These might seem like quibbles, but over the course of nearly 700 pages of small print, the stock phrases, clichés and peculiar word choices begin to grate. Alan Pell Crawford, WSJ, 10 May 2021 When expectation will become part of the equation and, yes, when Thibodeau’s voice could begin to grate. Harvey Araton, New York Times, 9 May 2021 For the Benedictine: First, grate your cucumbers on your box grater. Kathryn Gregory, The Courier-Journal, 27 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'grate.' 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 grate


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb (1)

1547, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for grate

Noun and Verb (1)

Middle English, from Medieval Latin crata, grata hurdle, alteration of Latin cratis — more at hurdle

Verb (2)

Middle English, from Anglo-French grater to scratch, of Germanic origin; akin to Old High German krazzōn to scratch

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Time Traveler for grate

Time Traveler

The first known use of grate was in the 14th century

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Statistics for grate

Last Updated

13 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Grate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for grate



English Language Learners Definition of grate

: a metal frame with bars across it that is used in a fireplace or to cover an opening


\ ˈgrāt How to pronounce grate (audio) \
grated; grating

Kids Definition of grate

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to break into small pieces by rubbing against something rough grate cheese
2 : to grind or rub against something with a harsh noise
3 : to have an irritating effect His voice grates on me.



Kids Definition of grate (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a frame containing parallel or crossed bars (as in a window)
2 : a frame of iron bars to hold a fire

More from Merriam-Webster on grate

Nglish: Translation of grate for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of grate for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about grate


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