(redirected from grimalkins)


 (grĭ-môl′kĭn, -măl′-)
A cat, especially an old female cat.

[Variant of graymalkin : gray + obsolete malkin, lower-class woman; see merkin.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


(ɡrɪˈmælkɪn; -ˈmɔːl-)
1. (Zoology) an old cat, esp an old female cat
2. a crotchety or shrewish old woman
[C17: from grey + malkin]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014


(grɪˈmæl kɪn, -ˈmɔl-)

1. a cat.
2. an old female cat.
3. an ill-tempered old woman.
[1595–1605; appar. alter. of gray1 + malkin, diminutive of Maud proper name; see -kin]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. a cat, particularly an old female cat.
2. a bad-tempered old woman.
See also: Cats
-Ologies & -Isms. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
Mentioned in ?
References in classic literature ?
As fair Grimalkin, who, though the youngest of the feline family, degenerates not in ferocity from the elder branches of her house, and though inferior in strength, is equal in fierceness to the noble tiger himself, when a little mouse, whom it hath long tormented in sport, escapes from her clutches for a while, frets, scolds, growls, swears; but if the trunk, or box, behind which the mouse lay hid be again removed, she flies like lightning on her prey, and, with envenomed wrath, bites, scratches, mumbles, and tears the little animal.
This could not be, however; he was not there; for, while Hepzibah was looking, a strange grimalkin stole forth from the very spot, and picked his way across the garden.
Two benches, shaped in sections of a circle, nearly enclosed the hearth; on one of these I stretched myself, and Grimalkin mounted the other.