Definition of grindstone in English:



  • 1A thick disk of stone or other abrasive material mounted so as to revolve, used for grinding, sharpening, or polishing metal objects.

    • ‘He is seen sharpening a weapon on an old-fashioned grindstone.’
    • ‘We also took turns at turning the crank of the grindstone when scythes needed to be sharpened.’
    • ‘This can be done by rubbing away surplus metal with a grindstone, whetstone, oilstone, steel, ceramic rod, leather strop or the palm of your hand.’
    • ‘Men occasionally damaged axes, meaning a visit to a nearby grindstone to hone a nick from the edge.’
    • ‘We're ready, the blades are being honed on the grindstones.’
    1. 1.1rare
      another term for millstone
      • ‘I looked in at the mill, saw the wear on the grindstone, awoke the morning next and - strangely - ordered that another be cut from my quarries up north.’
      • ‘The grinding of the grain was done with a grindstone called a Rotary Quern, or a Hand Quern (a small stone on top of a larger stone with the grain in between) if you were poorer.’
      • ‘The most important possessions of the miller were his pairs of grindstones, which were incredibly expensive.’
      • ‘Inside, huge grindstones are crushing wheat into flour once again, after an interruption of a century or so.’
      • ‘His master, Monsieur Vanderdendur, cut off his hand when his finger got caught in the grindstone in a sugar mill.’


  • keep one's nose to the grindstone

    • Work hard and continuously.

      • ‘Let him know you admire his ability to keep his nose to the grindstone, and he'll cherish you for it.’
      • ‘Brian keeps my nose to the grindstone and I continue to drive him up the wall with my behind-the-scene questions.’
      • ‘‘It's about time you took a holiday,’ she smiled as she poured tea, ‘You really have been keeping your nose to the grindstone lately.’’
      • ‘Determined to become a chiropractor from a very early age, she kept her nose to the grindstone all through high school and college.’
      • ‘He has kept his nose to the grindstone and will be pointing to investment and projects in the area as part of the benefits of having a local councillors.’
      • ‘I must keep my nose to the grindstone, adhere to routine, and remain undistracted by impulses and passion.’
      • ‘We are expected to keep our nose to the grindstone at work, be mindful at school and be reverent in church.’
      • ‘She kept her nose to the grindstone, her feet on the ground and her hands to herself.’
      • ‘He just knew that if he kept his nose to the grindstone and did an honest, good day's work, it would pay off and it certainly has in every position he's done.’
      • ‘From mass production clothing to managing factory lines to understanding the nature of different fabrics, he kept his nose to the grindstone and that has brought him where he is today.’
      work hard, labour, work one's fingers to the bone, work like a trojan, work like a dog, work day and night, exert oneself, keep at it, keep one's nose to the grindstone, grind away, slave away, grub away, plough away, plod away
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