Date: Tue, 14 Apr 1998 10:08:26 -0700
From: "A. Vine"
Subject: modern use of "gruntled"

>From the Word du jour email dl:

gruntled (GRUN-tl'd) (adj.)

-Definitions(s): 1. pleased; satisfied; contented (the opposite of


"An action against a barrister for negligence. . .
would open the door to every disgrunted client.
Now gruntled clients are rare in the criminal
--*New Statesman*, 11 Nov. 1966

"The Agency has a nice file of gruntled exes
who have found their talents in a great variety
of jobs."
--E. McGirr, *Hearse With Horses*, 1967

-Side Dishes: Gruntled has a curious history. *Gruntle* originally meant
"to grunt" (from Middle English *gruntelen*); then through the late 16th
century it was used to mean "to grumble or complain." Thus, *gruntled*
then would have meant essentially the same as our modern *disgruntled*,
"to become discontented." In 1938, however, P.G. Wodehouse revived the
word and gave it a modern spin, deciding that it made a nice counterpart
to *disgruntled*:

"He spoke with a certain what-is-it in his
voice, and I could see that, if not actually
disgruntled, he was far from being gruntled."
--P.G. Wodehouse, *Code of Woosters*, 1938

Copyright 1998 Tim Bottorff

Can anyone confirm P.G. Wodehouse as the origin of the modern use of this term?