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First attested Shakespeare 1603:
- Thy sharpe and sulpherous bolt Splits the vn-wedgable [unwedgable] and gnarled Oke [oak].
- Measure for Measure, Act II, scene ii, line 116
- Knotty and misshapen.
- 1914, Louis Joseph Vance, chapter I, in Nobody, New York, N.Y.: George H[enry] Doran Company, published 1915, OCLC 40817384:
- Three chairs of the steamer type, all maimed, comprised the furniture of this roof-garden, with […] on one of the copings a row of four red clay flower-pots filled with sun-baked dust from which gnarled and rusty stalks thrust themselves up like withered elfin limbs.
- Made rough by age or hard work.
knotty and misshapen
- simple past tense and past participle of (Etymology 1)
See gnarl (Etymology 2).
- simple past tense and past participle of (Etymology 2)