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Definition of "wrest" []

  • To obtain by or as if by pulling with violent twisting movements: wrested the book out of his hands; wrested the islands from the settlers. (verb-transitive)
  • To usurp forcefully: wrested power from the monarchy. (verb-transitive)
  • To extract by or as if by force, twisting, or persistent effort; wring: wrest the meaning from an obscure poem. (verb-transitive)
  • To distort or twist the nature or meaning of: wrested the words out of context. (verb-transitive)
  • To divert to an improper use; misapply. (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 "wrest" in a sentence
  • "The Republicans require wins in 39 districts to wrest from the Democrats control of the 435-member House."
  • "The change in the rules of engagement might help, but with only 20,000 more troops I do not see our forces being able to independently hold ground we wrest from the Sunni, or especially the Shiite, insurgents (or "militias" if you prefer)."
  • "Alaine screamed once and her body writhed, and then Tris felt the tortured spirit within wrest free of her prison."