[ klench ]
/ klɛntʃ /

verb (used with object)

verb (used without object)

to close or knot up tightly: His hands clenched as he faced his enemy.


Origin of clench

1200–50; Middle English clenchen; compare Old English beclencan hold fast

Can be confused

clench clinch Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for clench

British Dictionary definitions for clench


/ (klɛntʃ) /

verb (tr)

to close or squeeze together (the teeth, a fist, etc) tightly
to grasp or grip firmly


a firm grasp or grip
a device that grasps or grips, such as a clamp

noun, verb

another word for clinch

Word Origin for clench

Old English beclencan, related to Old High German klenken to tie, Middle High German klank noose, Dutch klinken rivet
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