—v.i. 1. to feel or express worry, annoyance, discontent, or the like: Fretting about the lost ring isn't going to help. 2. to cause corrosion; gnaw into something: acids that fret at the strongest metals. 3. to make a way by gnawing, corrosion, wearing away, etc.: The river frets at its banks until a new channel is formed. 4. to become eaten, worn, or corroded (often fol. by away): Limestone slowly frets away under pounding by the wind and rain. 5. to move in agitation or commotion, as water: water fretting over the stones of a brook.
—v.t. 1. to torment; irritate, annoy, or vex: You mustn't fret yourself about that. 2. to wear away or consume by gnawing, friction, rust, corrosives, etc.: the ocean fretting its shores. 3. to form or make by wearing away a substance: The river had fretted an underground passage. 4. to agitate (water): Strong winds were fretting the channel.
—n. 1. an irritated state of mind; annoyance; vexation.
2. erosion; corrosion; gnawing.
3. a worn or eroded place.
—n. 1. an interlaced, angular design; fretwork.
2. an angular design of bands within a border.
3. Heraldry.a charge composed of two diagonal strips interlacing with and crossing at the center of a mascle.
4. a piece of decoratively pierced work placed in a clock case to deaden the sound of the mechanism.