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[klin-cher] /ˈklɪn tʃər/
a person or thing that clinches.
a statement, argument, fact, situation, or the like, that is decisive or conclusive:
The heat was the clincher that made us decide to leave the city.
a nail, screw, etc., for clinching.
Automotive. a clincher tire.
Origin of clincher
1485-95; variant of Middle English clencher (clench + -er1) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for clincher
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The movie-maker was in his element now, delivering the clincher in an argument.

    Reel Life Films Samuel Kimball Merwin
  • This proved a clincher, and the lumbermen changed the subject.

    For the Liberty of Texas Edward Stratemeyer
  • Late in 1813, appeared the “Book of Wonders,” “in five parts,” and it was a clincher.

  • The last remark was intended as a clincher to settle the affair.

    True Blue W.H.G. Kingston
  • She paused, then, for clincher, threw out: He dines here to-morrow.

    The Monster

    Edgar Saltus
  • Theres a clincher for you, Harry said; the treasure is here all right.

    Roy Blakeley's Silver Fox Patrol

    Percy Keese Fitzhugh
  • After that clincher there was no doubt about it—we were in La Belle France all right, all right!

    Europe Revised Irvin S. Cobb
  • This was a clincher, and the sceptic joined in the laugh at his own expense.

    The Panama Canal J. Saxon Mills
  • "You're a convoluted mule," returned the ghost, tapping the enameled wall with his knuckle, as a clincher to his assertion.

    Edith and John Franklin S. Farquhar
British Dictionary definitions for clincher


(informal) something decisive, such as a fact, score, etc
a person or thing that clinches
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for clincher

early 14c., "person or thing that clinches" (i.e., secures nails by bending down or riveting the pointed end), late 15c. as a class of shipyard worker; agent noun from clinch (v.). As a type of nail, from 1735; as a conclusive statement, argument, etc., 1737.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for clincher



The deciding or conclusive element; the BOTTOM LINE: One smudged fingerprint was the clincher (1830s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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