Meaning of kvetch in English:


Pronunciation /kvɛtʃ/


informal North American
  • 1A person who complains a great deal.

    • ‘she emerges as something of a kvetch, constantly nagging Rick’
    • ‘Zoole, a hopeless kvetch, has good reason to complain.’
    • ‘And I don't want to seem like a kvetch, but where's the dessert?’
    • ‘Sure enough, at the end of his workday he is a kvetch who goads a black youngster into reaching for a gun and shoots him dead.’
    • ‘I was a real kvetch, and I wanted to be involved every step of the way.’
    shrew, curmudgeon, discontent, complainer, grumbler, moaner, fault-finder, carper
    1. 1.1A complaint.
      ‘‘They don't make 'em like they used to’ has become an all-purpose kvetch’
      • ‘To make the guest list, invitees would have to possess the ability to grumble, rant, complain, gripe, fuss, snarl, groan, scream and kvetch - preferably all at the same time.’
      • ‘I have a kvetch about my meal being cooked in the body fat of a dead animal.’
      • ‘My one kvetch was that not enough music was played from the Train A Comin’ album.’
      • ‘In Trading Hearts the veil of intimacy is lifted and the audience invited into the heart of a relationship to share the moments - the thoughts, the kvetches, and the fleeting heartbeats of bliss, the fights and the sex.’
      • ‘Without the historical fantasy, what's left is one long, pretentious kvetch, larded with hokum about forgiveness and redemption, that some men are geniuses and others are not.’
      complaint, grumble, moan, groan, grievance, objection, protest, whine


[no object] informal North American
  • Complain persistently.

    • ‘Jane's kvetching about her crummy existence’
    • ‘Just think, if the people who are now kvetching about freedom of speech simply posted their names on the website, then none of the speculation would have happened.’
    • ‘Coincidentally, he'd been kvetching to me about the lack of masquerade balls, just before I found out that there was going to be one.’
    • ‘I stand to the side, watching, listening to him kvetch about my lack of proper kitchen equipment.’
    • ‘I call it a good excuse for geeky types to get together and kvetch.’
    • ‘Thus every day, on my blog, these strangers show up, just to shoot the breeze, flirt, kvetch, veer off topic and, most of all, pay zero attention to what I have written.’
    grumble, complain, moan, groan, protest, whine, bleat, carp, cavil, lodge a complaint, make a complaint, make a fuss


1960s from Yiddish kvetsh (noun), kvetshn (verb), from Middle High German quetschen, literally ‘crush’.