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Definition of "clench" [clench]

  • To close tightly: clench one's teeth; clenched my fists in anger. (verb-transitive)
  • To grasp or grip tightly: clenched the steering wheel. (verb-transitive)
  • To clinch (a bolt, for example). (verb-transitive)
  • Nautical To fasten with a clinch. (verb-transitive)
  • A tight grip or grasp. (noun)

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 "clench" in a sentence
  • "Yet DOE's culture has been created around this idea that if you ever fail, you get your butt dragged up to Congress and shouted at, and that just causes everybody to kind of clench up."
  • "By 9: 00 p.m., six corrections officers had strapped him down and you could see Muhammad kind of clench his fist a few times."
  • ""I kind of clench my teeth every time Paterson says people will leave," said Edmund J. McMahon, director of the Empire Center for New York State Policy, a conservative-leaning research group that has advocated for sharp cuts in spending to balance New York's budget."