gritty

adjective
grit·​ty | \ ˈgri-tē How to pronounce gritty (audio) \
grittier; grittiest

Definition of gritty

1 : containing or resembling grit
2 : courageously persistent : plucky a gritty heroine
3 : having strong qualities of tough uncompromising realism a gritty novel

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Other Words from gritty

grittily \ ˈgri-​tə-​lē How to pronounce grittily (audio) \ adverb
grittiness \ ˈgri-​tē-​nəs How to pronounce grittiness (audio) \ noun

Did You Know?

Gritty comes from grit ("small hard granules"), which in turn derives (via Middle English) from the Old English word for "sand" or "gravel." Grit has been around since before the 12th century, but the first appearance of gritty in print in English was near the end of the 16th century, when it was used in the sense of "resembling or containing small hard granules." Grit entered American slang in the early 19th century with the meaning "courage or persistence," and, within about 20 years, gritty followed suit with a corresponding "plucky" sense. By the 19th century's end, gritty was also being used to describe a literary style that was rough and coarse.

Examples of gritty in a Sentence

I admire her gritty determination to succeed. The book describes the gritty realities of life on the streets. He gave us all of the gritty details of his divorce.
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Recent Examples on the Web

There are nitty-gritty details of housing finance in the plan, but the central change is ending the conservatorships. CBS News, "Privatizing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to shake up $10 trillion home loan market," 6 Sep. 2019 His mother and father, fearful that rich kids could afford and more easily access drugs, steered him toward a magnet high school in a gritty part of Los Angeles. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Column: Painful lesson of late Jake Palet: Helping, hurting can go hand-in-hand," 16 Sep. 2019 There are nitty-gritty details of housing finance in the plan, but the central change is ending the conservatorships. CBS News, "Privatizing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to shake up $10 trillion home loan market," 6 Sep. 2019 There are nitty-gritty details of housing finance in the plan, but the central change is ending the conservatorships. Marcy Gordon, USA TODAY, "Trump administration unveils plan to privatize Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac," 5 Sep. 2019 Universality allows researchers to describe these events without worrying about the nitty-gritty molecular or atomic details. Quanta Magazine, "Bubble Experiment Finds Universal Laws," 31 July 2019 Who will hate this candidate: Voters hungry for nitty-gritty details on what his policies would be, Democrats who want the party to stay away from divisive, culture-war issues. Quartz Staff, Quartz, "Meet all the Democratic candidates in the crowded 2020 race," 24 June 2019 The gritty, grandiose adaptation is a team effort: heavy lifting is done by Derek McLane’s scenic design, which goes beyond the stage to take over most of the room, and Catherine Zuber’s astonishing costumes. Adam Rathe, Town & Country, "Why Moulin Rouge! on Broadway is Not Moulin Rouge! the Movie," 19 Aug. 2019 The gritty metropolises that characters once hoped to escape evolved into the quirky, cupcake-dispensing playgrounds of young adults who don’t want to grow up. Joanna Scutts, Curbed, "The shows we’ve lived by," 14 Aug. 2019

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

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Dictionary Entries near gritty

gritrock

grits

grittle

gritty

grivation

grivet

grivois

Statistics for gritty

Last Updated

8 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for gritty

The first known use of gritty was in 1598

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More Definitions for gritty

gritty

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of gritty

: containing very small pieces of sand or stone : containing grit
informal : having or showing a lot of courage and determination
: harsh and unpleasant

gritty

adjective
grit·​ty | \ ˈgri-tē How to pronounce gritty (audio) \
grittier; grittiest

Kids Definition of gritty

1 : containing or like rough hard bits especially of sand
2 : showing toughness and courage
3 : harshly realistic a gritty story

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More from Merriam-Webster on gritty

Spanish Central: Translation of gritty

Nglish: Translation of gritty for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of gritty for Arabic Speakers

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