Definition of Grapple

1. Noun. A tool consisting of several hooks for grasping and holding; often thrown with a rope.

Exact synonyms: Grapnel, Grappler, Grappling Hook, Grappling Iron
Specialized synonyms: Crampon, Crampoon
Terms within: Claw, Hook
Generic synonyms: Tool

2. Verb. Come to terms with. "They made do on half a loaf of bread every day"

3. Noun. A dredging bucket with hinges like the shell of a clam.
Exact synonyms: Clamshell
Generic synonyms: Dredging Bucket

4. Verb. To grip or seize, as in a wrestling match. "The two men grappled with each other for several minutes"
Exact synonyms: Grip
Generic synonyms: Clutch, Prehend, Seize
Derivative terms: Grappler, Grappling, Grappling, Grip

5. Noun. The act of engaging in close hand-to-hand combat. "We watched his grappling and wrestling with the bully"
Exact synonyms: Grappling, Hand-to-hand Struggle, Wrestle, Wrestling
Generic synonyms: Struggle
Derivative terms: Wrestle, Wrestle

Definition of Grapple

1. v. t. To seize; to lay fast hold of; to attack at close quarters: as, to grapple an antagonist.

2. v. i. To use a grapple; to contend in close fight; to attach one's self as if by a grapple, as in wrestling; to close; to seize one another.

3. n. A seizing or seizure; close hug in contest; the wrestler's hold.

Definition of Grapple

1. Verb. (transitive) To seize something and hold it firmly. ¹

2. Verb. (transitive figuratively) to ponder and intensely evaluate a problem; normally used with "with". ¹

3. Verb. (intransitive) To use a grapple. ¹

4. Verb. (intransitive) To wrestle or tussle. ¹

5. Noun. (nautical) A device consisting of iron claws, attached to the end of a rope, used for grasping and holding an enemy ship prior to boarding; a grapnel or grappling iron. ¹

6. Noun. The act of grappling. ¹

7. Noun. A close hand-to-hand struggle. ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Grapple

1. to struggle or contend [v -PLED, -PLING, -PLES]

Medical Definition of Grapple

1. 1. A seizing or seizure; close hug in contest; the wrestler's hold. 2. An instrument, usually with hinged claws, for seizing and holding fast to an object; a grab. 3. Grapple plant, a projectile, to which are attached hinged claws to catch in a ship's rigging or to hold in the ground; called also anchor shot. See: Grapple, and cf. Crapple. Source: Websters Dictionary (01 Mar 1998)

Lexicographical Neighbors of Grapple

grapnel anchor
grappling hook
grappling iron
grappling irons

Literary usage of Grapple

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. The Century Dictionary: An Encyclopedic Lexicon of the English Language by William Dwight Whitney (1889)
"To grapple With, to contend with in close contest, as in wrestling ... She rubb'd her eyes ; but found their strength too weak To grapple irith mat stupor. ..."

2. Papers of the Archaeological Institute of America by Archaeological Institute of America, William Cranston Lawton, Joseph Silas Diller, Joseph Thacher Clarke (1898)
"It was necessary to cut, upon one at least of the two surfaces meeting at a joint, a vertical channel, through which the grapple could be released and ..."

3. Travels in the Interior of Southern Africa by William John Burchell (1822)
"grapple Plant) was not less abundant. It was just now in full bloom, spreading on the ground; some plants having already formed the grapple-like ..."

4. The Science of Jurisprudence: A Treatise in which the Growth of Positive Law by Hannis Taylor (1908)
"Death grapple between conciliar and parliamentary systems. who declared by a ... The time had now come for the death grapple between the conciliar system ..."

5. A Glossary; Or, Collection of Words, Phrases, Names, and Allusions to by Robert Nares, James Orchard Halliwell-Phillipps, Thomas Wright (1867)
"... which, as a substantive, means any strong hook by which things are seized and held, as ships to each other in boarding. See Todd in grapple. ..."

6. La démocratie libérale by Thomas Hodgkin, Etienne Vacherot (1896)
"THE DEATH-grapple. Source*:— Authorities. OUE most important authority for this period is ENNODIUS, BOOK IV. Bishop of Ticinum (473 to 521). ..."

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