- a staff or support to assist a lame or infirm person in walking, now usually with a crosspiece at one end to fit under the armpit.
- any of various devices resembling this in shape or use.
- anything that serves as a temporary and often inappropriate support, supplement, or substitute; prop: He uses liquor as a psychological crutch.
- a forked support or part.
- the crotch of the human body.
- Also crotch. Nautical.
- a forked support for a boom or spar when not in use.
- a forked support for an oar on the sides or stern of a rowboat.
- a horizontal knee reinforcing the stern frames of a wooden vessel.
- a forked device on the left side of a sidesaddle, consisting of two hooks, one of which is open at the bottom and serves to clamp the left knee and the other of which is open at the top and serves to support the right knee.
- to support on crutches; prop; sustain.
Origin of crutch
Examples from the Web for crutch
After my crying spell stopped, I gritted my teeth, tucked my crutch under my right arm, and turned to my husband.You’re Never ‘Cured’ of an Eating Disorder
December 20, 2014
“Sometimes swearing is a crutch that can be leaned on rather than used for emphasis,” he says.‘Veep’ Is a F*@king Masterclass in Cursing
April 7, 2014
Although I do love, I think that sometimes swearing is a crutch that can be leaned on rather than used for emphasis.Veep’s Jonah Is TV’s Most Insufferable Character (But We Love Him)
April 4, 2014
Even if it was a crutch, the Biblical language in these older writings did justice to the enormity of the forces at play.Polar Explorer vs. Reality TV Crew: Tim Jarvis in the Footsteps of Shackleton
January 12, 2014
In fact, Britney Jean is least enjoyable when Spears, on occasion, reverts to the Auto-Tune crutch.Britney Spears Is the Last of the Pop Goddesses
December 3, 2013
But just as the former is not necessarily a crutch, so the latter was not necessarily a cross.The Non-Christian Cross
John Denham Parsons
With these words he took an iron poker and fashioned it into a crutch for himself.The Chinese Fairy Book
How he tried all kinds of artifices, as he leaned on his crutch, and all in vain!A Hero of Our Time
M. Y. Lermontov
The "knocker-up" lifted his crutch and with the upper end of it he battered at the dog's brains.
The publican, who carried a stick, was drunk, and the "knocker-up" was staggering on a crutch.
- a long staff of wood or metal having a rest for the armpit, for supporting the weight of the body
- something that supports or sustainsa crutch to the economy
- British another word for crotch (def. 1)
- a forked support for a boom or oar, etc
- a brace for reinforcing the frames at the stern of a wooden vessel
- (tr) to support or sustain (a person or thing) as with a crutch
- Australian and NZ slang to clip (wool) from the hindquarters of a sheep
Word Origin and History for crutch
Old English crycce "crutch, staff," from Proto-Germanic *krukjo (cf. Old Saxon krukka, Middle Dutch crucke, Old High German krucka, German Kröcke "crutch," related to Old Norse krokr "hook;" see crook). Figurative sense is first recorded c.1600. As a verb, from 1640s. Italian gruccia "crutch," crocco "hook" are Germanic loan-words.
- A staff or support used by a physically injured or disabled individual as an aid in walking, usually designed to fit under the armpit and often used in pairs.