verb (1)
\ ˈgrāt How to pronounce grate (audio) \
grated; grating

Definition of grate

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

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

intransitive verb

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



Definition of grate (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : 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 (2)
grated; grating

Definition of grate (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

: to furnish with a grate the lower windows were grated

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Other Words from grate

Verb (1)

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

Examples of grate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Paul has a history of grating on teammates, and the Rockets style of play isn’t a lot of fun for players not named Harden. Chris Mannix,, "2019 NBA Free Agency Primer: Rumors, Stakes and More Buzz," 26 June 2019 Miss Manners has always been one to oppose analyzing conventional phrases literally, but frankly, this one grates on her, too. Judith Martin, Washington Post, "Miss Manners: Award recipients are not really ‘humbled’," 10 June 2019 Miss Manners has always been one to oppose analyzing conventional phrases literally, but frankly, this one grates on her, too. Judith Martin, The Mercury News, "Miss Manners: Please stop saying you’re ‘humbled’ if you don’t know what it means," 10 June 2019 Give the grill grates an oiling or spray down with a nonstick cooking spray. Chuck Blount,, "Celebrate July 4th with burgers, hot dogs freed from the grill," 1 July 2019 But what Moy’s video does highlight is the level of detail and difficulty that Apple is putting into machining the Mac Pro grates. Chaim Gartenberg, The Verge, "YouTuber proves Apple’s new Mac Pro would not actually grate cheese that great," 20 June 2019 The way her side lost possession of the ball still grated. Rob Harris,, "Germany brush off Marozsan absence to upend Spain," 12 June 2019 Norman's Culinary Cue When a recipe needs minced garlic, try peeling the garlic and grating it. Judy Buchenot, Naperville Sun, "Suburban Cooks: Life changes takes this self-taught chef on journey that started with cooking out of necessity," 11 June 2019 The huge grates now in place are called SLEDs—sea lion exclusion devices. Sallie Tisdale, Harper's magazine, "Catechism of the Waters," 10 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Five hours later, protesters smashed more windows and dismantled a towering metal grate protecting a section of the building, which was ordered closed and workers sent home. Ken Moritsugu,, "Protests escalate as Hong Kong marks handover to China," 1 July 2019 Preheat your grill to medium heat and lightly oil the grill grate. Jess Fleming, Twin Cities, "Salty-sweet pork chops are great for weeknight grilling," 19 June 2019 At first, Jim ’N Nick’s exclusively used pits—cooking on metal grates suspended over wood coals. Eric Velasco,, "Meet the crew who makes Birmingham’s barbecue," 3 June 2019 Prep: Look for large, already peeled and deveined ones that won't fall through the grates. Kate Merker, Good Housekeeping, "How to Grill Like a Pro This Summer," 20 May 2019 Its huge flow has been used for power and manufacturing since the 1850s, and today the waterfall is modified with various walls, grates, turbines, and fish ladders. Sallie Tisdale, Harper's magazine, "Catechism of the Waters," 10 June 2019 Such searches aren’t all that rare in a city with plenty of grates, utility, subway and otherwise. Charles Passy, WSJ, "NYPD to the Rescue in Case of the Lost Engagement Ring," 2 Dec. 2018 From 1 orange, grate 2 teaspoon zest into medium saucepan. The Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen, Good Housekeeping, "Citrusy Cranberry-Apricot Compote," 30 Oct. 2017 Lightly oil grill grates, then grill kebabs, turning occasionally, until just cooked through, 8 to 12 minutes total. Woman's Day Kitchen, Woman's Day, "Marinated Chicken Kebabs," 14 May 2019

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

Verb (1)

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


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

Verb (2)

1547, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for grate

Verb (1)

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

Noun and Verb (2)

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

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Statistics for grate

Last Updated

20 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for grate

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

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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

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More from Merriam-Webster on grate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with grate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for grate

Spanish Central: Translation of grate

Nglish: Translation of grate for Spanish Speakers

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

Comments on grate

What made you want to look up grate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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