gnarled

[nahrld]
adjective
1.
(of trees) full of or covered with gnarls; bent; twisted.
2.
having a rugged, weather-beaten appearance: a gnarled old sea captain.
3.
crabby; cantankerous.

Origin:
1595–1605; variant of knurled

ungnarled, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged

gnarl

1 [nahrl]
noun
1.
a knotty protuberance on a tree; knot.
verb (used with object)
2.
to twist into a knotted or distorted form.

Origin:
1805–15; back formation from gnarled


2. contort, distort.

gnarl

2 [nahrl]
verb (used without object)
to growl; snarl.

Origin:
1585–95; variant of gnar

Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
gnarl1 (nɑːl)
 
n
1.  any knotty protuberance or swelling on a tree
 
vb
2.  (tr) to knot or cause to knot
 
[C19: back formation from gnarled, probably variant of knurled; see knurl]

gnarl or gnar2 (nɑːl, nɑː)
 
vb
obsolete (intr) to growl or snarl
 
[C16: of imitative origin]
 
gnar or gnar2
 
vb
 
[C16: of imitative origin]

gnarled (nɑːld)
 
adj
1.  having gnarls
2.  (esp of hands) rough, twisted, and weather-beaten in appearance
3.  perverse or ill-tempered

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

gnarl
"contort, twist," 1814, a back-formation from gnarled.

gnarled
the source of the whole group of words, including gnarl (v.), gnarl (n.), gnarly, is Shakespeare's use of gnarled in 1603:
"Thy sharpe and sulpherous bolt Splits the vn-wedgable and gnarled Oke." ["Measure for Measure," II.ii.116]
OED calls it a variant of knurled, from M.E. knar "knot in wood" (late 14c.), originally "a rock, a stone;" of uncertain origin. "(Gnarled) occurs in one passage of Shakes. (for which the sole authority is the folio of 1623), whence it came into general use in the nineteenth century" [OED].
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Example sentences
But in a certain context, the gnarled roots of an exposed stump can impress too.
During those flips, the Sun's deep magnetic field gets really gnarled.
The wind of the north has twisted and gnarled its branches.
His toenail had only just started growing back in and it was so ugly and
  gnarled looking.
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