[ grap-uhl ]
/ ˈgræp əl /

verb (used without object), grap·pled, grap·pling.

verb (used with object), grap·pled, grap·pling.

to seize, hold, or fasten with or as with a grapple.
to seize in a grip, take hold of: The thug grappled him around the neck.


Origin of grapple

1520–30; apparently a frequentative of Old English gegrǣppian to seize; associated with grapnel


grap·pler, nounin·ter·grap·ple, verb, in·ter·grap·pled, in·ter·grap·pling.un·grap·pled, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

Examples from the Web for grapple

British Dictionary definitions for grapple

/ (ˈɡræpəl) /


to come to grips with (one or more persons), esp to struggle in hand-to-hand combat
(intr foll by with) to cope or contendto grapple with a financial problem
(tr) to secure with a grapple


any form of hook or metal instrument by which something is secured, such as a grapnel
  1. the act of gripping or seizing, as in wrestling
  2. a grip or hold
a contest of grappling, esp a wrestling match

Derived forms of grapple

grappler, noun

Word Origin for grapple

C16: from Old French grappelle a little hook, from grape hook; see grapnel
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