Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Having gnarls; knotty or misshapen.
  • adjective Rugged and roughened, as from old age or work.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Full of gnarls or rough knots; gnarly.
  • Hence Cross-grained; perverse.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Knotty; full of knots or gnarls; twisted; crossgrained.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • verb Simple past tense and past participle of gnarl. (Etymology 2)
  • adjective knotty and misshapen
  • adjective made rough by age or hard work
  • verb Simple past tense and past participle of gnarl. (Etymology 1)

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective used of old persons or old trees; covered with knobs or knots

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Probably variant of knarled, from knarl, tangle, knot, alteration of Middle English knarre, knot in wood; see knar.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

See gnarl (Etymology 2)

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

First attested Shakespeare 1603:

Examples

  • What kind of gnarled soul must one have not to crack a smile at the sight of a world-renowned Oscar winner belting out "Dancing Queen" in overalls?

    How soon can I reserve my tickets for a singalong screening of 'Mamma Mia!'? | EW.com

  • The perpetual inversions, the habitual irony, the mingled tenderness and mockery, give a kind of gnarled surface to the style, which is pleasant when you get familiar with it, but which repels the stranger, and to some people even remains permanently disagreeable.

    The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 01, No. 01, November, 1857 A Magazine of Literature, Art, and Politics

  • Mr. Percy FitzGerald, on visiting it some years ago, ventured to seek of the "gnarled" waiter information on the momentous question of Mr. Pickwick and his adventure.

    The Inns and Taverns of "Pickwick"; with Some Observations on Their Other Associations,

  • She was hoping that Dan would never grow "gnarled" towards herself, longing for him to speak and promise that he would not, but he still remained silent, and presently the door burst open, the rinking party appeared on the threshold, and the opportunity for quiet conclave was over.

    A College Girl

  • In a devastatingly detailed piece of testimony which probably sealed victory for the TV company Shaw admitted that she couldn't see their faces, but identified Terreblanche from his huge white bottom, which rose and fell between Allan's recognisably 'gnarled' toes.

    Home | Mail Online

  • In a devastatingly detailed piece of testimony, which probably sealed victory for the TV company, Shaw admitted that she couldn't see their faces, but identified Terre'Blanche from his huge white bottom, which rose and fell between Allan's recognisably "gnarled" toes.

    IOL: News

  • If you're looking to bring the outdoors in, mix materials such as gnarled wood (as seen in their barley twist twin beds).

    ajc.com - News

  • In a devastatingly detailed piece of testimony, which probably sealed victory for the TV company, Shaw admitted that she couldn't see their faces, but identified Terre'Blanche from his huge white bottom, which rose and fell between Allan's recognisably "gnarled" toes.

    IOL: News

  • However, if you're hoping that Betty White mania has faded completely-and, seriously, what kind of gnarled, coal-like heart have you got, anyway?!

    E! Online (US) - Top Stories

  • What kind of gnarled soul must one have not to crack a smile at the sight of a world-renowned Oscar winner belting out

    Entertainment Weekly's PopWatch

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