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1. noun Of a student, the act of working intently, and primarily, on getting good grades. I know some of the kids in my class are grade-grubbing and only want to get an A above all else.
2. noun The act of trying to persuade a teacher to change one's grade, as through flattery or questioning. All the grade-grubbing needs to stop—that question is not misleading, and I'm not changing any of your grades.
3. adjective Describing a student who is solely focused on getting good grades. You're bound to get a few grade-grubbing students who just want an A and don't really care about the material.

grub around

1. To search for someone or something. I'm in the art closet, grubbing around for some old paints for the kids to use. The pigs are always grubbing around for scraps.
2. To wear unattractive clothing that is old, shabby, and possibly dirty. It's a Sunday afternoon, so I'm just grubbing around in some old sweats
See also: around, grub

grub around for (something)

To search for someone or something. I'm in the art closet, grubbing around for some old paints for the kids to use. The pigs are always grubbing around for scraps.
See also: around, grub

grub around in (something)

To wear unattractive clothing that is old, shabby, and possibly dirty. It's a Sunday afternoon, so I'm just grubbing around in some old sweats.
See also: around, grub

grub for (something)

1. To search in the ground for something, often food, as by digging or scratching. The pigs are always grubbing for scraps.
2. To try to obtain something through brazen begging and pleading. Every time the CEO comes to our office, employees start grubbing for her time and attention, in the hope of being noticed.
See also: grub

grub on

slang To eat something. Got anything to grub on? I'm starving. The kids are grubbing on some chips and watching TV right now.
See also: grub, on

grub out (on something)

To eat (a specific thing) gluttonously or to excess. "Grub" is a common slang for food. Once a month, my friends and I get together to grub out on pizza and watch cheesy horror movies together. They had enough food at the party to ensure everyone would be grubbing out all night long.
See also: grub, out

Grub Street

1. Literally, the street in London that was home to impoverished writers with little talent in the 17th century. Although this course will certainly focus on the classics, we will also read several works from the authors of Grub Street, to get a better sense of the time period as a whole.
2. A derisive term used to describe impoverished writers with little talent. Don't read trash written by Grub Street hacks—enrich your mind with the classics instead!
See also: grub, street

grub up

To search in the ground for something, often food, as by digging or scratching. The pigs are thrilled when they can grub up some scraps.
See also: grub, up


slang Unattractive articles of clothing that are old, shabby, or dirty. It's a Sunday afternoon, so I'm just hanging around the house in some grubbies.
See also: grubby


Obsessive and aggressive in one's attempts to accumulate and hoard money. Tom's always been a bit money-grubbing—he'd sell his own mother if it meant a bit more profit. These money-grubbing CEOs don't give a damn about their customers' wellbeing, so long as they're able to keep lining their own pockets.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

grub around

(for someone or something) to search around for someone or something. I went to the attic and grubbed around for my old uniform. The guys went out and grubbed around for another soccer player.
See also: around, grub

grub around (in something)

to wear old or "grubby" clothes around. I was grubbing around in my jeans when Alice showed up. I was wearing my jeans and just sort of grubbing around when she came.
See also: around, grub
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

grub for

1. To dig in the ground to get something out of it, especially food: The bears grubbed for beetles in the soft ground.
2. To try to achieve or get something by begging, nagging, or acting in a shameless way: The members of the city council were always grubbing for more power.
See also: grub

grub up

To procure something by or as if by digging in the ground for it: The bird grubbed up some worms from under the rock.
See also: grub, up
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

bust a grub

tv. to eat a meal. Man, I’m starved. Let’s go bust a grub.
See also: bust, grub


1. n. working hard at one’s studies in hopes of a high grade. If all you’re here for is grade-grubbing, you’re going to miss a lot.
2. n. flattering a teacher in hopes of a higher grade. Some teachers don’t mind a lot of grade-grubbing.
3. mod. having to do with students who are only concerned with getting high grades. Two grade-grubbing seniors came in and begged me to change their grades.


1. n. food. Hey, this grub’s pretty good.
2. and grub up in. to eat [a meal]. Let’s grub up and get going.
3. tv. to eat something; to eat a meal. Are you going to grub that whole pizza?
4. n. an earnest student. (see also grade-grubber.) The test was so hard, even the grubs did poorly.
5. n. a sloppy person. (From grub worm.) Don is such a grub all the time.
6. Go to grubbies.

grub up

See grub
See also: grub, up

grub on something

in. to eat something. What are you grubbing on? It looks horrible.
See also: grub, on, something


and grubbers and grubs (ˈgrəbiz and ˈgrəbɚz and grəbz)
n. worn-out clothing; clothing one wears for the occasional dirty job. There I was, running around in my grubs when the senator stops by to say hello! It’s time to wash these grubbies.
See also: grubby


See also: grub
McGraw-Hill's Dictionary of American Slang and Colloquial Expressions Copyright © 2006 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
"And, finally, at the end of the summer holiday Grub Club volunteers will be running a free trip to Twin Lakes Theme Park for all regular attenders at Grub Club."
Products designed to prevent grubs are generally applied late June to mid-July.
Eat Grub says that gram for gram its dried crickets contain more protein than beef, chicken and pork - with 100g containing 68g of protein, compared to 31g of protein in beef.
Salisbury's clerk of the course Jeremy Martin confirmed sightings of both chafer grubs and badger scratchings (God knows what they taste like) on the course.
Grub Kitchen is the UK's first dedicated insect restaurant which opened in 2015, run by Andy Holcroft and entomologist Dr Sarah Beynon.
| new Grub's is offering a 20% discount off orders on its website to Wales YFC members who use the code "WYFC17" at the checkout.
But whether they're active or inactive; spring, summer, fall, or winter; before, during or after a front--a grub can always catch at least a few fish.
In Dubai, building, setting up and launching a hotel is fairly easy, however attention to detail is essential if you want the property to work, according to Heinz Grub, General Manager of recently opened The Sheraton Grand Hotel in Dubai.
The most effective method is biological and involves drenching the soil with nematodes that eat the grubs. The soil needs to be above 5C for this to work so it may be too late this year but certainly worth doing in the spring and repeating as necessary.
Grub's, which has two restaurants in Fayetteville and one in Rogers, will open in leased quarters at 8302 Phoenix Ave.
The recipes in the food boxes have been devised by Student Grub founder and passionate foodie, April Green, who was inspired to set up the company when her son was about to start university.
Which problem should you deal with first -- weeds or grubs? Fortunately, we can attack both issues concurrently.
Talking to Grub Street about Single Shots (get it), the new compilation of outtakes from his confusingly popular web series Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, the New York-based comedian admits he hasn't found a replacement bagel shop since H&H bagels shuttered its Upper West Side location.
Jorge Nogueira, currently head of the business unit Functional Chemicals at Lanxess, will take over responsibility for the business unit Performance Butadiene Rubbers based in Fribourg, Switzerland, from Joachim Grub. Grub will take a one-year sabbatical.