Gremlin meaning

grĕmlĭn
Frequency:
A maker of mischief.
noun
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An imaginary gnomelike creature to whom mechanical problems, especially in aircraft, are attributed.
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A small imaginary creature humorously blamed for the faulty operation of airplanes or the disruption of any procedure.
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The culprit to blame when something goes wrong with hardware or software. Gremlins are mythical, ill-behaved creatures, and "a gremlin did it" is a joke when nobody knows what caused the problem. See gremlin drone.
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A mythical creature reputed to be mechanically inclined and mischievously inclined to damage or dismantle machinery.
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(by extension) Any mysterious, unknown source of trouble or mischief.

We rechecked everything, and we suspect gremlins in the database.

noun
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Origin of gremlin

  • Perhaps blend of Irish gruaimín bad-tempered little fellow (from Middle Irish gruaim gloom, surliness) goblin

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Possibly from Old English grëmian ("to vex", "to anger"), related to German grämen and Swedish gräma ("to grieve").

    From Wiktionary