grinding nightmare

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Senior Member
The water ran ceaselessly in the basin, and Wendy felt that she had suddenly stepped into some grinding nightmare where time ran backward, backward to the time when her drunken husband had broken her son’s arm and had then mewled over him in almost the exact same words.
Source: The Shining by Stephen King

Does grinding nightmare mean endless nightmare? If not, what does it mean?

Thank you
  • Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    It's a use derived from this meaning of grind:
    to oppress, torment, or crush They were ground down by poverty.

    It is probably also colored by the idea of grinding as laborious and tedious.

    The nightmare was especially oppressive and tormenting.
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