Definition of gridiron
- Put the steaks on the gridiron.
- a gridiron of streets
- The two teams will face each other on the gridiron.
Theme music by Joshua Stamper ©2006 New Jerusalem Music/ASCAP
The book recounts his many moments of glory on the gridiron.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'gridiron.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Modern gridirons are most likely to be covered by football players, but the original gridirons were more likely to be covered with meat or fish; they were metal gratings used for broiling food over an open fire. In Middle English, such a grating was called a gredil, a root that gave modern English both gridiron and griddle. How did gridiron become associated with football? That happened in the late 1800s, when a white grid pattern was added to football fields to help enforce new rules about how many yards a team had to gain to keep possession of the ball. From high up in the stands, the lines made the playing fields look like cooking gridirons.
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
: a metal grid for cooking food over a fire
: the field on which American football is played
What made you want to look up gridiron? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).
Merriam-Webster's New Words Quiz—Fall 2017 Edition!
Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.TAKE THE QUIZ
Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.TAKE THE QUIZ