One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A person with very conventional standards of propriety.
- ‘Today's Mrs Grundys tend to be intense and humourless social workers, activists and public health officials who harangue modern youth about the dangers of sex without ever mentioning morality or daring to suggest they should avoid it.’
- ‘Following hot on the re-banning of Pasolini's film ‘Salo’, the Mrs Grundys have revisited the 1978 horror flick, ‘I spit on your grave’ and have banned it.’
- ‘Only the global fusspots and self-righteous Mrs Grundys of politics keep demanding that the UK waste its young men's blood and taxpayers’ treasure in overseas snake pits.’
- ‘Rarely see The Stooges on TV anymore-the Nervous Nellys & Mrs Grundys of the PC age have got 'em banned ‘cos they're ‘too violent’, but modern claptrap is OK.’
- ‘When will these latter-day Mrs Grundys realise that the only outcome of their hysteria is to massively increase the audiences for the object of their hand-wringing and breast-beating?’
- ‘The Mr and Mrs Grundys who are worried about the ‘poppy show’ might like to consider that serious physical activity, including traditional play, needs appropriate clothing, and school uniforms need to consider these requirements.’
Early 19th century: a person repeatedly mentioned in T. Morton's comedy Speed the Plough (1798), often in the phrase ‘What will Mrs Grundy say?’, which became a popular catchphrase.
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