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snarl1

[snahrl] /snɑrl/
verb (used without object)
1.
to growl threateningly or viciously, especially with a raised upper lip to bare the teeth, as a dog.
2.
to speak in a surly or threatening manner suggestive of a dog's snarl.
verb (used with object)
3.
to say by snarling:
to snarl a threat.
noun
4.
the act of snarling.
5.
a snarling sound or utterance.
Origin
1580-1590
1580-90; earlier snarle, equivalent to obsolete snar to snarl (cognate with Dutch, Low German snarren, German schnarren) + -le
Related forms
snarler, noun
snarlingly, adverb

snarl2

[snahrl] /snɑrl/
noun
1.
a tangle, as of thread, hair, or wire.
2.
a complicated or confused condition or matter:
a traffic snarl.
3.
a knot in wood.
verb (used with object)
4.
to bring into a tangled condition, as thread or hair.
5.
to render complicated or confused:
The questions snarled him up.
6.
to raise or emboss, as parts of a thin metal vessel, by hammering on a tool (snarling iron) held against the inner surface of the vessel.
verb (used without object)
7.
to become tangled; get into a tangle.
Origin
1350-1400; Middle English snarle; see snare1, -le
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for snarl
  • City political affairs have never before presented such a knotty snarl as now.
  • Behind the snarl lies a cagey opportunist, proficient hunter, and dutiful parent.
  • He will snarl and the fur on his back and neck will stand up.
  • And while the two campaigns snarl ever more loudly at each other, both leaders continue to stress bipartisanship.
  • Sweat ran down his face, which he was trying to keep straight but kept twisting into a snarl.
  • Recently a highway collapsed, causing an epic snarl-up.
  • The negotiating text is now a snarl of material that few parties can agree upon.
  • His thoughts clogged as if a comb working through his mind had stuck against a snarl.
  • When people approach, the adult dogs raise their hackles and snarl threateningly.
  • At the outset, however, such concerns were forgotten amid a conventioneers' snarl over accommodations.
British Dictionary definitions for snarl

snarl1

/snɑːl/
verb
1.
(intransitive) (of an animal) to growl viciously, baring the teeth
2.
to speak or express (something) viciously or angrily
noun
3.
a vicious growl, utterance, or facial expression
4.
the act of snarling
Derived Forms
snarling, adjective
snarlingly, adverb
snarly, adjective
Word Origin
C16: of Germanic origin; compare Middle Low German snarren, Middle Dutch snarren to drone

snarl2

/snɑːl/
noun
1.
a tangled mass of thread, hair, etc
2.
a complicated or confused state or situation
3.
a knot in wood
verb
4.
(often foll by up) to be, become, or make tangled or complicated
5.
(transitive) often foll by up. to confuse mentally
6.
(transitive) to flute or emboss (metal) by hammering on a tool held against the under surface
Derived Forms
snarler, noun
snarly, adjective
Word Origin
C14: of Scandinavian origin; compare Old Swedish snarel noose, Old Norse snarasnare1
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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Word Origin and History for snarl
v.

"to tangle, to catch in a snare or noose" (trans.), late 14c., from a noun snarl "a snare, a noose" (late 14c.), probably a diminutive of snare (n.1). Intransitive sense "become twisted or entangled" is from c.1600. Related: Snarled; snarling.

"growl and bare the teeth," 1580s, perhaps from Dutch or Low German snarren "to rattle," probably of imitative origin (cf. German schnarren "to rattle," schnurren "to hum, buzz"). Meaning "speak in a harsh manner" first recorded 1690s. Related: Snarled; snarling.

n.

late 14c., "a snare, noose," from snarl (v.1). Meaning "a tangle, a knot" is first attested c.1600. Meaning "a traffic jam" is from 1933.

"a sharp growl accompanied by a display of the teeth," 1610s, from snarl (v.2).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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