Definition of "shackle" [shac•kle]

  • A metal fastening, usually one of a pair, for encircling and confining the ankle or wrist of a prisoner or captive; a fetter or manacle. (noun)
  • A hobble for an animal. (noun)
  • Any of several devices, such as a clevis, used to fasten or couple. (noun)
  • A restraint or check to action or progress. Often used in the plural: economic shackles that precluded further investment. (noun)
  • To confine with shackles; fetter. (verb-transitive)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "shackle" in a sentence
  • ""Is a title worth it-- does a title shackle a person?" the former Alaska governor asked during a discussion of her 2012 plans"
  • "She trotted out a line she's used before - going back, as JMart points out, at least a year to her fall appearance in Iowa - where she asked this question, Does a title shackle a person..."
  • "In fact, the chain shackle and wire rope clambered, as it were, up out of the groove on the right-hand side of the V of the wheel, got on the top of the rim of the V-wheel, and rushed down with a crash on the smaller wheel, giving, no doubt, a severe shock to the cable to which it was attached."