Pronounced: ih-FLOO-vee-uhm, noun
Notes: You may know this word; it is a “borderline” word
The word grimalkin means
- an old female cat
- an ill-tempered older woman
This word came into English around 1600 (the late 1500s to the early 1600s)
Background / Comments
I think I’ve run across our word in one of its meanings, but I cannot recall the details. It is thought our word comes from a corruption of gray combined with malkin, which is a diminutive of the proper name Maud. It is not clear to me how Maud came to refer to a woman. It is clear that gri (gray) refers to being older, as in “gray-headed”.