AskDefine | Define gnaw

Dictionary Definition



1 bite or chew on with the teeth; "gnaw an old cracker"; "chewed on a cookie"
2 become ground down or deteriorate; "Her confidence eroded" [syn: erode, gnaw at, eat at, wear away] [also: gnawn]

User Contributed Dictionary



  • /nɔː/


  1. To bite something persistently.
    • Her teeth gnawed at me all night, keeping me twisting and turning from pain.
  2. To produce excessive anxiety or worry.
    • Her comment gnawed at me all night, keeping me twisting and turning in bed.

Derived terms


to bite something persistently

Extensive Definition

Gnaw is the name of a Sharkticon, in the fictional Transformers universe.
It is also a chewing action that most rodents do.

Generation 1

Transformers: The Movie

Gnaw was one of the Sharkticons seen in the planet Quintessia that captured Hot Rod. Gnaw was intended to be a generic Sharkticon soldier.

Dreamwave Productions

Instead of being a Decepticon, the Gnaw in Dreamwave Productions is an Autobot ally. Gnaw's first appearance in fiction was in the Dreamwave Productions Generation 1 series. In the continuity, Gnaw is an Autobot friend of Wheelie. They were part of a rebel group led by Kup, Hot Rod and Optimus Prime, and Gnaw particitapes in the battle against Shockwave. However, Dreamwave's closure means that more stories of Gnaw can not be told.

IDW Publishing

Gnaw can be seen in the cover page of Transformers Spotlight on Galvatron, as one of the monsters attacking him.


  • Generation 1 Gnaw

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

ablate, abrade, abrase, afflict, agonize, ail, annoy, badger, bark, bedevil, beleaguer, bite, bother, burn, canker, chafe, champ, chaw, chew, chew the cud, chew up, chomp, consume, convulse, corrode, crucify, crumble, cut, devour, distress, eat, eat away, eat into, erase, erode, excruciate, fester, file, fray, frazzle, fret, gall, give pain, gnash, gnaw away, grate, graze, grind, gripe, gum, harass, harrow, harry, haunt, hector, hurt, inflame, inflict pain, irk, irritate, kill by inches, lacerate, martyr, martyrize, masticate, mouth, mumble, munch, nag, nettle, nibble, nibble away, nip, oxidize, pain, peeve, pester, pierce, pinch, plague, prick, prolong the agony, put to torture, rack, rankle, rasp, raze, rub, rub away, rub off, rub out, ruminate, rust, scour, scrape, scrub, scuff, skin, stab, sting, tease, torment, torture, trouble, tweak, twist, vex, wear, wear away, wear down, worry, wound, wring
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