Definition of grumble in English:

grumble

verb

  • 1[reporting verb] Complain about something in a bad-tempered way:

    [with direct speech] ‘‘I'm getting old,’ she grumbled’
    [no object] ‘the cashier grumbled about changing Swiss money’
    [with clause] ‘his father was grumbling that he hadn't heard from him’
    • ‘Motorists who grumble about the lack of parking spaces in city centres are selfish and stupid.’
    • ‘Some grumble and gripe, and lurch from crisis to crisis.’
    • ‘"Ouch, " I grumbled irritably, massaging my eyes with my palms.’
    • ‘He heard her grumbling something unintelligible, a sure sign that she was frustrated.’
    • ‘Several men grumbled loudly about this, and shifted uneasily about the room.’
    • ‘He grumbled under his breath in response as he rolled his eyes.’
    • ‘"I don't see why the devil I should, " David grumbled in reply.’
    • ‘The person next to me grumbled a bit, but didn't move over.’
    • ‘"Good for me then, " Tray grumbled in reply.’
    • ‘Folding the blasted wings back to where they were, I grumbled unhappily.’
    • ‘Tony grumbled incoherently and ran his fingers through his hair.’
    • ‘Sullenly, Andrea settled down into her seat and grumbled something incoherent.’
    • ‘"Don't rush me, " I grumbled in reply just as the lock clicked open.’
    • ‘She grumbled irritably as the younger face of a woman appeared above her.’
    • ‘I grumbled a few obscenities underneath my breath, and slung his heavy pack over my shoulder.’
    • ‘She grumbled something incomprehensible, and he had to stifle a smile.’
    • ‘"Sorry, " they grumbled in unison.’
    • ‘The man grumbled angrily as he glared down from atop of his horse.’
    • ‘"It's not funny, " he grumbled sourly, and I laughed harder.’
    • ‘Joey grumbled something incoherent, we all laughed, and I settled back into the seat.’
    complain, moan, groan, whine, mutter, grouse, bleat, carp, cavil, protest
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  • 2[no object] Make a low rumbling sound:

    ‘thunder was grumbling somewhere in the distance’
    • ‘Thunder grumbled outside, causing the picture on the TV screen to tremble.’
    • ‘Sometimes it screams, grumbles or whistles too; this's noise that's constantly on the move, morphing into strange new shapes.’
    • ‘The crooning stopped, replaced by the sound of the engine grumbling steadily and the road moving beneath us smoothly.’
    • ‘His voice was a low bass, rumbling and grumbling in his throat, and it came out slow and steady like molasses.’
    • ‘The heavens began rumbling and grumbling, and without warning, great bolts of lightning flashed out and struck several larger demons down.’
    • ‘It was then thunder grumbled low and loud from dark, heavy clouds covering the sun.’
    • ‘His voice grumbled slightly, and mixed with the sounds that she could not longer hear, it sounded perfect.’
    • ‘It rumbles and grumbles when I accelerate, and pops back through its exhaust when I decelerate.’
    rumble, gurgle, murmur, growl, roar
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  • 3usually as adjective grumbling[no object] (of an internal organ) give intermittent discomfort:

    ‘a grumbling appendix’
    • ‘Stomach grumbling, I looked up at the clock - It was about noon - grimaced, and grabbed a banana off the counter, padding upstairs.’
    • ‘He didn't understand half of what the man had just said, but his stomach started grumbling at the mention of food.’
    • ‘My tummy grumbled, and it dawned on me that I hadn't eaten in a long while.’
    • ‘His stomach was grumbling from not having eaten lunch.’
    • ‘The smell of cooking drifted up the stairs and we descended with stomachs grumbling to the traditionally decorated restaurant.’
    • ‘The food looked great, and my stomach was grumbling.’
    • ‘The aforementioned organ grumbled loudly to prove my point, and I sighed.’
    • ‘For once, I was glad she did as my stomach was grumbling very loudly and very audibly.’
    • ‘My stomach was still grumbling a bit so I figured the packing could wait a little longer.’
    • ‘Her stomach was grumbling loudly, and she realized she had forgotten to eat last night in her anxious state.’
    • ‘Annie's stomach was grumbling louder with each second that passed by.’
    • ‘My stomach grumbled as the smell invaded my nostrils.’
    • ‘Soon, however, my stomach begins grumbling, and I leave the textiles to follow the tempting aroma of grilled fish.’
    • ‘Her stomach was grumbling and the emptiness inside seemed to have filled her with nothing but air.’
    • ‘She fidgeted on her spot, shifting from one foot to another as an uncomfortable silence filled the air, but she was saved when her stomach started grumbling loudly.’
    • ‘His stomach is grumbling, but he doesn't want to leave his desk.’
    • ‘It was the smell of the food that had my stomach grumbling and my mouth filling with saliva faster than I could swallow.’
    • ‘After that, my stomach was grumbling and everyone else was groaning about their hunger.’
    • ‘My stomach was grumbling on the inside really hard.’
    • ‘I groaned softly, my stomach grumbling even more fiercely.’

noun

  • 1A complaint:

    ‘the main grumble is that he spends too much time away’
    • ‘She strode pas the long line, to grumbles and complaints from the waiting queue.’
    • ‘That's my only little grumble at the moment and it's not really a grumble because I'm in a really good mood!’
    • ‘It doesn't happen that often, but every now and again the heroic team that handles all our feedback looks up from the wave of grumbles and groans and points out a stack of praise for something we've done.’
    • ‘They only grumble when they don't do what they want them to.’
    • ‘My only grumble is that the print run doesn't appear to be huge.’
    • ‘Though it's true that editors are always grumbling about the state of things, the grumbles were now louder and more widespread.’
    • ‘This is part of the issue in that the people, with all their groans and grumbles, are by and large happy with Skipton as it is.’
    • ‘He flashed his badge, ignoring the groans and grumbles from the rest of the people in line.’
    • ‘Scott let out a low grumble muttered under his breathe but went out and brought in the steaks.’
    • ‘He was interrupted by loud grumbles of displeased soldiers.’
    • ‘The main grumble on the newsgroup is lack of information and weak Tech Support.’
    • ‘There were a few grumbles from large shareholders and analysts leading up to the vote.’
    • ‘My only grumble was the additional black peppercorn sauce I ordered was more muted than I had hoped for.’
    • ‘For many if not most bloggers, their blog is at times an outlet for grumbles, gripes and general complaints about their lot in life - a release valve, somewhere they can let off steam.’
    • ‘I'm thinking this wasn't so much a programme for government as a scribbled list of bar-stool grumbles and grievances.’
    • ‘Were it not for the grumbles and complaints of those who cannot appreciate the art of commercials, I would certainly have more appetite for my dinner and eat more healthy food when I watch TV commercials.’
    • ‘My black file of readers' complaints is always dominated by grumbles featuring the supermarkets' failure to get the right wine from the right vintage at the right price on to the right shelf at the right time.’
    • ‘There will always be grumbles about something but the grumbles are much reduced.’
    • ‘‘It was hard work and there were bad times as well as good but we had no grumbles.’’
    • ‘Finally unit number three ran without any complaints or grumbles.’
    complaint, moan, groan, whine, muttering, grievance, objection, protest, protestation, cavil, quibble, criticism, charge, accusation
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  • 2A low rumbling sound.

    • ‘It started as a weak sound and then it grew into a grumble.’
    • ‘Beyond the rust streaked door we could hear the grumble and whine of machinery.’
    • ‘The only reply was a grunt, and a grumble, which sounded like, ‘Go away.’’
    • ‘He thought he might hear the distant grumble of thunder.’
    • ‘After that I made some sound that sounded like a grumble, but not quite.’
    • ‘His ears pricked, trying to identify the sound which had cut even through the grumble of the surf, and then he blinked in disbelief.’
    • ‘He gave off a sigh that sounded like a grumble, but Stephanie didn't seem to have noticed.’
    • ‘To complete the aural aspects of the game, the sound effects perform their role admirably with the expected clangs of weapons striking armor, roars and grumbles of enemies, and zaps and fizzles of magic.’
    • ‘She began hissing and growling this horrible low grumble like something from a Stephen King novel.’
    • ‘A little thrill flickers in my body as I see the sky darken to a deep purple over the horizon, and in the distance I hear a small grumble of thunder.’
    • ‘The sonic boom and low grumble of the blast is deafening.’
    • ‘My stomach emitted a low grumble, and I gave a sigh of relief.’
    rumble, gurgle, murmur, growl, roar
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Origin

Late 16th century: from obsolete grumme (probably of Germanic origin and related to Dutch grommen) + -le.

Pronunciation:

grumble

/ˈɡrʌmb(ə)l/