What does much to his chagrin mean?

If chagrin means feeling of embarrassment, then can we write “I felt chagrin” or the like? What about “I was chagrined by”?

Then what does much to chagrin mean in a sentence, or is this the way we put it?

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    “Much to [someone’s] X ” is a set construction denoting that something causes a strong feeling of X in the person named. So “much to my chagrin” means ‘causing me a great deal of chagrin’; “much to my dismay” means ‘causing me a great deal of dismay’, etc. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Aug 31 '13 at 12:57
  • @JanusBahsJacquet suggest you post as answer – bib Aug 31 '13 at 16:02

Chagrin as a Verb means:

Feel annoyed and disappointed

Chagrin as a Noun mean:

Annoyance and disappointment because something has not happened the way you hoped

To sb's Chagrin means means feeling Displeased or Ashamed because of a situation.

  • So is the meaning slighly different when used as "To sb's Chagrin" ? Switching to disappointment to embarassment ? – Pam Aug 31 '13 at 16:21
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    yeah, i believe so. Am i wrong? – Benyamin Hamidekhoo Aug 31 '13 at 16:39
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    The verb form is uncommon, but I've seen it, usually as a participle like “I'm chagrined to learn that.” – Bradd Szonye Sep 1 '13 at 2:25
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    Sure thing. The OED says that chagrin as a verb is archaic. It means “To trouble, vex, worry, grieve. arch.” One citation given is “Every word they say chagrins us, and we know not where to begin to set them right.” from Emerson in the early 1840s. As @BraddSzonye said, I don’t think it gets used much these days. They say it is usually used in the passive, like “Surprised and chagrined by the coldness of her manner.” There is also an 18th century citation of an apparent intransitive use: “ I would not have your ladyship chagrin at my bride’s expression.” from 1727 in Fielding. – tchrist Sep 1 '13 at 14:42
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    @tchrist, I have to disagree with your first comment—in this case, the adjective ‘chagrined’ is a participle of the verb in origin, not a nominal derivation. The adjectives derived from nouns and adjectives do not accept agentive complements, which ‘chagrined’ does: “She was much chagrined by the news of his failure”. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Sep 1 '13 at 14:59

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