2. a contemptuous designation applied in the latter part of the 17th century to the members of the so-called ‘Country Party’ in English politics, who were accused by the ‘Court Party’ of being actuated by dissatisfied personal ambition; hence in later times applied to supporters of the Opposition (obsolete)
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from grumble (vb.), in imitation of Muggletonian and Grindletonian, names of religious sects in the 17th century
From: The British Drama
A Collection of the Most Esteemed Tragedies, Comedies, Operas, and Farces
in the English Language.
Volume First, 1824
She Stoops to Conquer. A Comedy, By Dr. Goldsmith. Act I, Scene II