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Definition of "nettle" []

  • Any of numerous plants of the genus Urtica, having toothed leaves, unisexual apetalous flowers, and stinging hairs that cause skin irritation on contact. (noun)
  • Any of various hairy, stinging, or prickly plants. (noun)
  • To sting with or as if with a nettle. (verb-transitive)
  • To irritate; vex. (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 "nettle" in a sentence
  • "He will make over to the ignominy of ignorant and barbaric ages, -- 'for we call a nettle but a nettle,' he will turn into a forgotten pageant of the rude, early, instinctive ages, the yet brutal ages of an undeveloped humanity, that triumphant reception at home, of the Conqueror of Foreign States."
  • "Naturalist we are told, that these names are omitted, 'for we call a nettle but a nettle, and the faults of fools their folly,' -- that exclusive good he finds both passive and active, and this also is one of those primary distinctions which 'is formed in all things,' and so too is the _subdivision_ of passive good which follows."
  • "a monkey, poison to a nettle, and folly to a fool, they called a nettle"