gnarls

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.
Dictionary.com Unabridged

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]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

gnarl
"contort, twist," 1814, a back-formation from gnarled.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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