1 of 2


gri·​mace ˈgri-məs How to pronounce grimace (audio) gri-ˈmās How to pronounce grimace (audio)
: a facial expression usually of disgust, disapproval, or pain
a grimace of hate and rage
grimacer noun


2 of 2


grimaced; grimacing

intransitive verb

: to distort one's face in an expression usually of pain, disgust, or disapproval
Grimacing slightly, he runs his finger over the back of his heel, where a deep … fissure has opened inside a callus.Chris Ballard
My father shifted his weight and grimaced. The sheet slid off his injured leg, the calf swollen, purple as a plum …Bernard Cooper

Examples of grimace in a Sentence

Noun The patient made a painful grimace as the doctor examined his wound. he made a grimace when he tasted the medicine Verb playgoers grimaced at the actor's terrible attempt at a French accent
Recent Examples on the Web
Arwen takes one swallow, grimaces, and puts down the glass. Annie Proulx, The New Yorker, 30 June 2024 Still, Jones rallied through visible grimaces of pain and hit her best event, the uneven bars. Kaetlyn Liddy, NBC News, 29 June 2024
Although most governments along the route are grimacing at SunRail’s bill, in Winter Park — where the station near trendy Park Avenue boasts one of the highest number of riders — commissioners enthusiastically agreed last week to pay the city’s $350,000 portion. Martin E. Comas, Orlando Sentinel, 8 July 2024 When Biden spoke, Trump often grimaced and furrowed his brow. Eric Cortellessa, TIME, 28 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for grimace 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'grimace.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



French, from Middle French, alteration of grimache, of Germanic origin; akin to Old English grīma mask

First Known Use


1651, in the meaning defined above


1762, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of grimace was in 1651

Dictionary Entries Near grimace

Cite this Entry

“Grimace.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition


: facial expression usually of disgust, disapproval, or pain
grimace verb

More from Merriam-Webster on grimace

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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