Word of the Day: Chagrin

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Chagrin [shə-grĭn’] literally refers to the cutting pain produced by the friction of Shagreen leather. It is widely used in a figurative way, however, where it means a strong embarrassment that is caused by failure, disappointment or by an awkward circumstance.

Lear brokered the deal to get then-middleweight boxing champion Bernard Hopkins to wear a tattoo promoting an online gambling website that covered his entire back for the biggest fight of 2001 against Felix Trinidad, much to the chagrin of promoters and TV networks. (USA Today)

Like Google’s Gmail, a powerful and well designed e-mail service that people often prefer to their company’s own system (to the chagrin of IT managers), Skype may prove too attractive to squash. (The Economist)

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6 thoughts on “Word of the Day: Chagrin”

  1. This has become one of my favorite words. Stephenie Meyer uses it quite often in her novels – it’s kind of stuck in my head now.

  2. Ohhh I HATE that word! Because I see “grin” in it, I always think it’s something positive. I hope knowing its interesting origin will finally dispel the wrong connotation from my mind permanently. It’s my onw little “false cognate” (but not really)/

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