to seize and hold by or as if by clasping with the fingers or arms.
to seize upon; hold firmly.
to get hold of mentally; comprehend; understand: I don't grasp your meaning.
to make an attempt to seize, or a motion of seizing, something (usually followed by at or for): a drowning man grasping at straws; to grasp for an enemy's rifle.
the act of grasping or gripping, as with the hands or arms: to make a grasp at something.
a hold or grip: to have a firm grasp of a rope.
one's arms or hands, in embracing or gripping: He took her in his grasp.
one's power of seizing and holding; reach: to have a thing within one's grasp.
hold, possession, or mastery: to wrest power from the grasp of a usurper.
mental hold or capacity; power to understand.
broad or thorough comprehension: a good grasp of computer programming.
- grasp·a·ble, adjective
- grasper, noun
- graspless, adjective
- re·grasp, verb (used with object)
- un·grasp·a·ble, adjective
- un·grasped, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use grasp in a sentence
They have locked down pathways to that power to limit the likelihood that it will move out of their grasp.What happens to an entrenched two-party system when one party undermines the system? | Philip Bump | February 12, 2021 | Washington Post
If you suffer from gaming sickness, there’s unfortunately no scientific evidence you’ll ever free yourself from its grasp.Video games can cause motion sickness—here’s how to fight it | Sandra Gutierrez G. | February 2, 2021 | Popular-Science
Still, the Hong Kong group wanted more data to get a better grasp of the situation.The Hard Lessons of Modeling the Coronavirus Pandemic | Jordana Cepelewicz | January 28, 2021 | Quanta Magazine
Things to consider when buying an external hard driveBefore you make an effort to purchase an external drive, it helps if you have a firm grasp not only on what you need to store but how much of it you have and how accessible it needs to be.The best external hard drives: Expand your file storage | Eric Alt | January 22, 2021 | Popular-Science
In many instances, there is neither a shared set of truths nor a solid-enough grasp of history, even among those with the greatest power.
And the more she is forced to recount, the more her grasp of reality slips, or heightens, depending on your point of view.
The grasp on the sabre would tighten; the quiet eyes would flash.
It also seemed that Biden had a good grasp of the subtleties of Iraqi politics.
But the problem with Virgin Galactic is that Branson has never had any real grasp of how serious the technical challenges are.Tycoons in Space: One in Orbit and One Still Grounded | Clive Irving | October 5, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Just a few months ago my 3-year-old son, mid-tantrum, broke my grasp to run from me in a crowded subway station.
Never grasp a Fern plant from above and try to pull it away, as this will be almost sure to result in damage.How to Know the Ferns | S. Leonard Bastin
We suffer, nearly all of us, from a lack of quantitative grasp and from an imperfect grasp of form.The Salvaging Of Civilisation | H. G. (Herbert George) Wells
This widening grasp of languages is or was within the capacity of nearly everyone born into the world—given the facilities.The Salvaging Of Civilisation | H. G. (Herbert George) Wells
Frulein Fichtner is more in the bravura than in the sentimental line, and she has a certain breadth, grasp, and freshness.Music-Study in Germany | Amy Fay
His mind is characterized by the literalness, rather than the comprehensive grasp of great subjects.The Book of Anecdotes and Budget of Fun; | Various
British Dictionary definitions for grasp
to grip (something) firmly with or as if with the hands
(when intr, often foll by at) to struggle, snatch, or grope (for)
(tr) to understand, esp with effort
the act of grasping
a grip or clasp, as of a hand
the capacity to accomplish (esp in the phrase within one's grasp)
total rule or possession
- graspable, adjective
- grasper, noun
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
Other Idioms and Phrases with grasp
In addition to the idiom beginning with grasp
- grasp at straws
- get a fix on (grasp of)
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.