[ net-l ]
/ ˈnɛt l /
Save This Word!
See synonyms for: nettle / nettled / nettles on Thesaurus.com


any plant of the genus Urtica, covered with stinging hairs.Compare nettle family.
any of various allied or similar plants.

verb (used with object), net·tled, net·tling.

to irritate, annoy, or provoke.
to sting as a nettle does.



Are you aware how often people swap around “their,” “there,” and “they’re”? Prove you have more than a fair grasp over these commonly confused words.
Question 1 of 7
Which one of these commonly confused words can act as an adverb or a pronoun?

Idioms for nettle

    grasp the nettle, Australian. to undertake or tackle an unpleasant task.

Origin of nettle

before 900; Middle English; Old English netele (noun); cognate with Dutch netel,German Nessel,Norwegian netla


net·tle·like, adjectivenettler, nounnettly, adjectiveun·net·tled, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for nettle

British Dictionary definitions for nettle

/ (ˈnɛtəl) /


any weedy plant of the temperate urticaceous genus Urtica, such as U. dioica (stinging nettle), having serrated leaves with stinging hairs and greenish flowers
any of various other urticaceous plants with stinging hairs or spines
any of various plants that resemble urticaceous nettles, such as the dead-nettle, hemp nettle, and horse nettle
grasp the nettle to attempt or approach something with boldness and courage

verb (tr)

to bother; irritate
to sting as a nettle does

Derived forms of nettle

nettle-like, adjectivenettly, adjective

Word Origin for nettle

Old English netele; related to Old High German nazza (German Nessel)
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
Book Your Online Tutor Now