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[groo-uh-ling, groo-ling] /ˈgru ə lɪŋ, ˈgru lɪŋ/
exhausting; very tiring; arduously severe:
the grueling Boston marathon.
any trying or exhausting procedure or experience.
Also, especially British, gruelling.
Origin of grueling
1850-55; slang gruel punishment (noun), punish (v.) + -ing2, -ing1
Related forms
gruelingly, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for grueling
  • The grueling schedule that many doctors go through to train as specialists is about to ease.
  • They put themselves through grueling marathons of public scrutiny.
  • Business travel is grueling enough without having to put up with someone you don't know well for the entire evening.
  • Together, in between grueling shifts, they broke fast and prayed for the mud to hold.
  • It was a grueling journey through horrible heat and humidity.
  • It is a story of grueling hours, forsaken personal lives and constant anxiety.
  • Sure, it's a great place to take a breather after you've completed the grueling marathon of graduate school.
  • Nothing about this fat-bellied ark would begin to suggest the grueling odysseys it has endured.
  • The grueling three-year editing process resulted in a mesmerizing work that few people have seen in its entirety.
  • It's an odd name for the old rose that flourishes even in the grueling heat.
British Dictionary definitions for grueling


severe or tiring: a gruelling interview
(informal) a severe experience, esp punishment
Word Origin
C19: from now obsolete vb gruel to exhaust, punish
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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