Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

grind - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb grind pronunciation in American English /ɡraɪnd/
Word Forms
present tense
present participlegrinding
past tenseground
past participleground
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  1. 1



    grind up

    [transitive] to break something into very small pieces or powder, by using a machine or by crushing it between two hard surfaces

    The mill was used for grinding corn until the 17th century.

    Synonyms and related words
  2. 2
    [transitive] to press something down onto a surface using a lot of force

    She ground a half-smoked cigarette into the ashtray.

  3. 3
    [transitive] to make something such as a knife smooth or sharp by rubbing it against a hard surface
  4. 4
    [intransitive] if a machine or vehicle grinds, it moves or works slowly, noisily, and with difficulty

    A truck came grinding up the hill.

    They waited for the ancient elevator to grind its way up from below.

    1. a.
      [intransitive/transitive] if parts of a machine grind, or if someone grinds them, they rub together and make an unpleasant noise


to fall over forwards so that your face hits the ground or another surface

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the activity of exploring abandoned buildings and other manmade structures

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play