Definition of grommet in English:



  • 1An eyelet placed in a hole to protect or insulate a rope or cable passed through it or to reinforce the hole.

    • ‘It looks to me as if the grommet thingy for the cable has bust.’
    • ‘This bay even comes with rubber grommets on the screw holes to reduce noise from vibration.’
    • ‘Punch grommets along each side of the towels so the holes will line up when folded in half.’
    • ‘Before we could pull it in, it flipped over and once that happens the grommets rip out.’
    • ‘To animate these figures, cut off the arms and legs, then reattach them with tiny grommets (grommet punchers are available at crafts stores).’
    • ‘You simply attach the grommets to the support holes of the tone bars.’
    • ‘If the rubber grommets that are attached to the chimes are hard or brittle, it can result in very muted tones when the chimes are rung.’
    • ‘I had to cut a small hole in the pad to accommodate one of the grommets.’
    • ‘The metal rings inside the holes of conventional leather shoes could be called grommets.’
    • ‘The thicker products, sold as ‘engine pads’ with grommets in the corners to tie them in position, lasted at least an hour-and-a-half.’
    • ‘It looks light in weight because of the holes in the grommets, yet is extremely heavy.’
    • ‘String silencers, rubber grommets at accessory mounting points, and loctite on all threads are good noise reducing methods.’
    • ‘Retaining mechanisms on the exterior of the body retain the grommet within the bore formed in the secondary panel and may be adapted to accommodate varying thickness in the secondary panel.’
    • ‘The trainees also receive daily inspections on their haircuts, uniform press, white gloves and grommets, among other uniform elements.’
    • ‘Available in all sizes and several metals, grommets - also called eyelets - can be found in crafts, hardware, and fabric stores.’
    • ‘Use a grommet tool, available at crafts stores, to poke an eyelet hole in the closure's center and to set a grommet in place.’
    • ‘As with work platforms, the enclosure material is attached with clips, wire, rope, or grommets.’
    • ‘The chrome back panel is secured by the motherboard stand-offs which pass through rubber grommets.’
    • ‘At each grommet location, follow the manufacturer's instructions to trim the fabric from the grommet hole and attach the snap-on cover.’
    • ‘Punch two grommets at each corner, and thread a length of rope through the holes from the underside.’
  • 2British A tube surgically implanted in the eardrum to drain fluid from the middle ear.

    • ‘This can be treated with antibiotics or a minor operation to insert a tiny plastic tube or grommet through the eardrum, allowing the fluid to drain.’
    • ‘They are perfectly safe if used according to the instructions, and the following contraindications are observed: not to be used if there is a perforated eardrum, or if grommets are inserted.’
    • ‘If hearing is affected, they may have drainage tubes, or grommets, placed in the eardrums.’
    • ‘Contraindications include current or recurrent otitis, an already perforated drum or one containing a grommet, an uncooperative patient, or an impacted foreign body.’
    • ‘The effectiveness of some other operations, such as middle ear drainage with grommets and stripping and ligation of varicose veins, is debatable.’
  • 3Australian informal A young or inexperienced surfer or skateboarder.

    • ‘Was it hard going being a grommet at school making a lot of money at such a young age?’
    • ‘Does it feel weird now that, let's be honest, you're not a grommet anymore, and there's expectations and pressure for you to deliver a world title?’
    • ‘This event is staged to allow parents to pay the Surfing Australia membership fees and to get the grommets in the water for the first contest for the year.’
    • ‘There will be divisions for both girl and boy grommets in under 12, under 14, under 16 and under 18.’
    • ‘Naturally, as the event progresses, winners and outstanding performances are expected with all young surfers pushing the limits to try and become the top grommet in the state!’


Early 17th century (in nautical use in the sense ‘a circle of rope used as a fastening’): from obsolete French grommette, from gourmer to curb, of unknown ultimate origin. Current senses date from the mid 20th century.