\ ˈgrēs How to pronounce grease (audio) \

Definition of grease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : rendered animal fat
b : oily matter
c : a thick lubricant
2 : wool as it comes from the sheep retaining the natural oils or fats
in the grease
of wool or fur : in the natural uncleaned condition


\ ˈgrēs How to pronounce grease (audio) , ˈgrēz How to pronounce grease (audio) \
greased; greasing

Definition of grease (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to smear or daub with grease
2 : to lubricate with grease
3 : to soil with grease
4 : to hasten the process or progress of also : facilitate
grease the hand of or grease the palm of
: bribe

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from grease


greaseless \ ˈgrēs-​ləs How to pronounce greaseless (audio) \ adjective
greaseproof \ ˈgrēs-​ˈprüf How to pronounce greaseproof (audio) \ adjective

Synonyms for grease

Synonyms: Verb

lubricate, oil, slick, wax

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of grease in a Sentence


Grease the pan before you put the cake batter in. make sure you grease the pan before you put the batter in

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And speaking of snacks, don’t expect the typical amusement-park grease bombs. Amber Turpin, The Mercury News, "20 awesome things to do at Legoland," 21 July 2019 There are a number of possible culprits for a faulty sewer system: grease buildup, blockage from debris, tree roots penetrating the sewer lines. Jessica Levy, The Courier-Journal, "What you need to know about plumbing before buying a home," 15 July 2019 Look out especially for prominent splatters or grease stains, since these messes can add their scent to fresh foods and cause harmful smoke during baking. Kelly Dawson, House Beautiful, "Here's How to Actually Clean an Oven—Because It’s Probably Long Overdue," 15 July 2019 Sales rose 7% to $114 million for the quarter, which the company said was bolstered by especially strong North American sales as customers stocked up on their grease and cleaning products. Jordan Valinsky, CNN, "Customers stockpiled WD-40 because of price hikes. Its stock is soaring," 10 July 2019 Used restaurant grease and other oils unsuitable for human consumption, added to enhance palatability for our pooches. Brian Kateman, Quartz, "Vegan pets sound bougie, but they might just save the Earth," 12 June 2019 Throw out the box if there’s a lot of grease and food left inside. Devin Kelly, Anchorage Daily News, "How to recycle like a pro in Anchorage," 7 June 2019 My engineer son took apart his dishwasher's mechanisms and found his problem was caused by accumulated grease. Washington Post, "Hints From Heloise: Celebrate the Fourth!," 4 July 2019 The Beatrice Daily Sun reports the plant processes corn oil and greases into biodiesel. USA TODAY, "Robot hostesses, veggie booze, ‘civil death’: News from around our 50 states," 4 July 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The main role of government for Britain’s new Liberal Party, then, was just keeping the wheels of commerce greased and staying out of the way. John Broich, The Conversation, "The difference between ‘left’ and ‘liberal’ – and why voters need to know," 30 July 2019 Food, rides, games, greased pole climb, musical acts. Susan Dunne,, "Connecticut celebrates diversity with these cultural festivals through the rest of summer," 18 July 2019 The mother-daughter duo partook in the age-old tradition of moisturizing and greasing one’s scalp. Paula Rogo, Essence, "Grease In Greece: Willow Smith Greases Her Mother’s Scalp In This Candid Mother-Daughter Moment," 14 July 2019 Line a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with parchment paper and grease the parchment with butter. CBS News, "The Dish: Chef Priya Krishna reveals her signature recipes," 15 June 2019 Even listings services Zillow and Redfin have launched similar programs hoping to grease the wheels of a real estate transaction that is stressful, time-consuming, and costly. Jeff Andrews, Curbed, "New home flipping platform sells to the first bidder, not the highest," 19 Sep. 2018 And the show greases that torpedo with the occasional bouts of extreme gore, nudity, and rape. Adrian Daub, The New Republic, "Hulu’s Das Boot Gets Lost at Sea," 19 June 2019 To help grease the wheels, Niantic is letting players do five special trades and reducing the stardust cost by 50 percent. Gieson Cacho, The Mercury News, "5 quick tips for Pokemon Go Fest 2019," 13 June 2019 Oil money greased every sector of society—from the government, military, business and media to nongovernmental organizations including religious groups. Mary Anastasia O’grady, WSJ, "Power and Money in Venezuela," 10 Feb. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of grease


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for grease


Middle English grese, from Anglo-French gresse, greisse, creisse, from Vulgar Latin *crassia, from Latin crassus fat

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about grease

Dictionary Entries near grease






grease band


Statistics for grease

Last Updated

4 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for grease

The first known use of grease was in the 13th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for grease



English Language Learners Definition of grease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: melted animal fat
: an oily substance



English Language Learners Definition of grease (Entry 2 of 2)

: to put a thin layer of grease or oil on (something)


\ ˈgrēs How to pronounce grease (audio) \

Kids Definition of grease

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a substance obtained from animal fat by melting
2 : oily material
3 : a thick lubricant


\ ˈgrēs How to pronounce grease (audio) , ˈgrēz\
greased; greasing

Kids Definition of grease (Entry 2 of 2)

: to coat or lubricate with an oily material

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on grease

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


marked by turns or indirection

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Summer 2019 Words of the Day Quiz

  • a-bowl-of-peach-sorbet-with-cut-peaches-next-to-it
  • Which is a synonym of desideratum?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!