grudg·​ing | \ ˈgrə-jiŋ How to pronounce grudging (audio) \

Definition of grudging

1 : unwilling, reluctant a grudging supporter of the reform movement a grudging admirer
2 : done, given, or allowed unwillingly, reluctantly, or sparingly grudging compliance

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Other Words from grudging

grudgingly adverb

Did You Know?

More than five hundred years have passed since English jurist Sir John Fortescue observed, "Somme . . . obtayne gretter rewardis than thei have disserved, and yit grugge, seying they have [too] litill." Fortescue's "grugge" (an early spelling of the verb grudge) meant "to grumble and complain," just like its Middle English forerunner, "grucchen," and the Anglo-French word grucer, which gave rise to the English forms. English speakers had adopted the "complaining" sense of "grudge" by the late 1400s, and by 1500 they had added the extended sense "reluctant." That second sense may have developed because people associated "grudge" with the related word begrudge (meaning "to give reluctantly"). "Grudging," which developed from "grudge," made its English debut around 1533.

Examples of grudging in a Sentence

Her theories have begun to win grudging acceptance in the scientific community. He has earned the grudging admiration of his rivals.

Recent Examples on the Web

The history of the U.S. women’s soccer team exemplifies the grudging, incomplete acceptance of female athletes. Tate Royer, The Denver Post, "Guest Commentary: The biggest fight facing the U.S. women’s soccer team isn’t on the field," 14 June 2019 The difficulties that she and Zoose experience as their grudging acquaintance develops into devoted friendship are, it must be confessed, at considerable stylistic distance from the calamitous human struggle. Meghan Cox Gurdon, WSJ, "Children’s Books: Taking to the Sky," 25 Jan. 2019 The plaintiffs’ papers appeared to offer other examples of grudging or derogatory descriptions of Asian applications, but they had been redacted. Anemona Hartocollis, New York Times, "Harvard Rated Asian-American Applicants Lower on Personality Traits, Suit Says," 15 June 2018 With the ballot proposal hanging over legislators’ heads, the push for an alternative gained grudging support. Daisuke Wakabayashi, New York Times, "California Passes Sweeping Law to Protect Online Privacy," 28 June 2018 The rest of the world’s zeal to oust Assad has faded, with a grudging acceptance of the Russian-authored status quo taking hold in Western capitals. Ishaan Tharoor, Washington Post, "Russia stays in the driver’s seat in Syria," 10 July 2018 Of the sons, only Kayce, the one who left (and who at some point became a war hero) has earned his father’s grudging respect, and Kayce wants no part of it. Ellen Gray,, "With Kevin Costner in 'Yellowstone,' Paramount Network finds home on the range," 15 June 2018 France regularly forces migrants back across the Italian border, deports dozens of others and gives only grudging aid to the relative handful who make it through the first filter. Adam Nossiter, New York Times, "Scorned Migrant Boat Exposes Raw Feelings Among European Allies," 13 June 2018 Critics, watching Curry battle the Mighty James to at least a draw, gave grudging respect. Scott Ostler, San Francisco Chronicle, "Stephen Curry started — and carried — a Warriors’ dynasty," 8 June 2018

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

circa 1531, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for grudging

see grudge entry 1

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Statistics for grudging

Last Updated

18 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for grudging

The first known use of grudging was circa 1531

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More Definitions for grudging



English Language Learners Definition of grudging

: said, done, or given in an unwilling or doubtful way

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Comments on grudging

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something desired as essential

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