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Definition of "grapple" []

  • An iron shaft with claws at one end, usually thrown by a rope and used for grasping and holding, especially one for drawing and holding an enemy ship alongside. Also called grapnel, grappling, grappling hook, grappling iron. (noun)
  • Nautical See grapnel. (noun)
  • The act of grappling. (noun)
  • A struggle or contest in which the participants attempt to clutch or grip each other. (noun)
  • A struggle for superiority or dominance. (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 "grapple" in a sentence
  • "Ireland, which now faces a budget deficit equal to 32 percent of its economic output, has become a test case for how countries that have spent beyond their means - including the United States and Britain - grapple with massive deficits."
  • "The future stories that remain grapple with current issues or have a contemporary flavor."
  • "Bad example, but the grape-apple hybrid they sell at Walmart is referred to as grapple, which is completely unrelated to the serious mental or physical wrestling the original word connotes."