from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One whose business it is to grind or sharpen knives; especially, one who goes about seeking for employment in sharpening cutting-instruments: in the United States more commonly called a scissorsgrinder.
  • noun A grindstone, emery-wheel, or other machine for grinding knives.
  • noun The night-jar: same as grinder, 3.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • A few doors from the bakery, a knife-grinder was set - ting up his display cases along the sidewalk.


  • The patrician and the knife-grinder, the duke and the peer, the limb of the law, the courtiers and townspeople, as they used to say in olden times, all are subjects of this fairy.

    Les Miserables

  • A knife-grinder came and set up his stall right next to my tree.


  • He is not a working man because he is not a man; he is not any workman anybody has ever known; he is not the funny Irish bricklayer you talked to when you were a little boy; he is not the plumber or the mysterious plumber's mate; he is not the gardener, who was rather cross; he is not the needy knife-grinder or the romantic rat-catcher.

    G.K. Speaks - About the Workers

  • Crosbie had not been treated as the needy knife-grinder, and had ground to stand upon while he urged his request.

    The Last Chronicle of Barset

  • I am like the knife-grinder, who had no story to tell — none at least to be told.

    Phineas Finn

  • They were a motley crew, but none the less dangerous for that, I reflected, making my way through a knot of men gathered round an itinerant knife-grinder, who was sharpening dirks, razors, and scythes with perfect indifference.

    Dragonfly in Amber

  • A few doors from the bakery, a knife-grinder was set - ting up his display cases along the sidewalk.


  • Their ancestors traced back to Charles II, mine traced back to a Victorian knife-grinder.

    Hot Money

  • A fly would patter in brisk spurts, followed by a pause while it washed its hands - a dull rasping sound like a knife-grinder at work.

    My Family and Other Animals


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