noun (usually used with a plural verb)
a gripping tool consisting of two pivoted limbs forming a pair of jaws and a pair of handles (usually used with pair of).
Zoology. a grasping organ or pair of organs resembling this, as the claw of a lobster.
Origin of pincers
1300–50; Middle English pinsers,
plural of *pinceour
< Anglo-French pince(r
) to pinch
+ -our -or2
Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
Examples from the Web for pincers
Historical Examples of pincers
Mr. Hartgold took up a diamond with a pair of pincers, and exhibited it to the banker.
It looks as though someone had held the letter in a—a pair of pincers.
Others, they plucked off all the hair of their heads and beards with pincers.
As if I were being pounded with mallets and torn by pincers.
If the foreign body can be seen it should be grasped with a pincers and removed.
British Dictionary definitions for pincers
Also called: pair of pincers a gripping tool consisting of two hinged arms with handles at one end and, at the other, curved bevelled jaws that close on the workpiece: used esp for extracting nails
the pair or pairs of jointed grasping appendages in lobsters and certain other arthropods
Word Origin for pincers
C14: from Old French pinceour, from Old French pincier to pinch
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for pincers
early 14c., "tool for grasping or nipping," from Old French pinceure "pincers, tongs," from pincier "to pinch" (see pinch). Applied to animal parts from 1650s. Related: Pincer.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
A jointed grasping claw of certain animals, such as lobsters and scorpions.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.