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gnawing (comparative more gnawing, superlative most gnawing)

  1. (of pain or hunger) severe or intense
    • 2013, Bernhard Rammerstorfer, Unbroken Will
      Engleitner found the constant gnawing hunger harder and harder to bear. When the rations eventually increased again and the prisoners were given stew, it did not make much difference to Engleitner.



  1. present participle of gnaw


gnawing (plural gnawings)

  1. The process by which something is gnawed.
    the gnawings of mice
  2. A sensation of being gnawed.
    • 1836, American Anti-Slavery Society, The Anti-Slavery Examiner, Part 1 of 4[1]:
      The spirit of slavery raves under tormenting gnawings, and casts about in blind phrenzy for something to ease, or even to mock them.
    • 1893, Marietta Holley, Samantha at the World's Fair[2]:
      "If I made them suffer the pains of exile, I would not let them endure also the gnawings of starvation.
    • 1917, Julian Street, American Adventures[3]:
      But from the time we returned from our first journey, after having spent some months in trying, as some one put it, to "discover America," I felt the gnawings of excited appetite.