gauntlet

1
[ gawnt-lit, gahnt- ]
/ ˈgɔnt lɪt, ˈgɑnt- /

noun

a medieval glove, as of mail or plate, worn by a knight in armor to protect the hand.
a glove with an extended cuff for the wrist.
the cuff itself.

Words nearby gauntlet

Idioms for gauntlet

    take up the gauntlet,
    1. to accept a challenge to fight: He was always willing to take up the gauntlet for a good cause.
    2. to show one's defiance.
    Also take up the glove.
    throw down the gauntlet,
    1. to challenge.
    2. to defy.
    Also throw down the glove.

Origin of gauntlet

1
1375–1425; late Middle English gantelet < Middle French, diminutive of gant glove < Germanic *want-; compare Old Norse vǫttr

OTHER WORDS FROM gauntlet

gaunt·let·ed, adjectiveun·gaunt·let·ed, adjective

WORDS THAT MAY BE CONFUSED WITH gauntlet

gambit gamut gantlet gauntlet
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

British Dictionary definitions for throw down the gauntlet (1 of 2)

gauntlet1

gantlet

/ (ˈɡɔːntlɪt) /

noun

a medieval armoured leather glove
a heavy glove with a long cuff
take up the gauntlet to accept a challenge
throw down the gauntlet to offer a challenge

Word Origin for gauntlet

C15: from Old French gantelet, diminutive of gant glove, of Germanic origin

British Dictionary definitions for throw down the gauntlet (2 of 2)

gauntlet2
/ (ˈɡɔːntlɪt) /

noun

a punishment in which the victim is forced to run between two rows of men who strike at him as he passes: formerly a military punishment
run the gauntlet
  1. to suffer this punishment
  2. to endure an onslaught or ordeal, as of criticism
a testing ordeal; trial
a variant spelling of gantlet 1 (def. 1)

Word Origin for gauntlet

C15: changed (through influence of gauntlet 1) from earlier gantlope; see gantlet 1
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

Idioms and Phrases with throw down the gauntlet (1 of 2)

throw down the gauntlet

Declare or issue a challenge, as in The senator threw down the gauntlet on the abortion issue. This expression alludes to the medieval practice of a knight throwing down his gauntlet, or metal glove, as a challenge to combat. Its figurative use dates from the second half of the 1700s, as does the less frequently heard take up the gauntlet, for accepting a challenge.

Idioms and Phrases with throw down the gauntlet (2 of 2)

gauntlet

see run the gauntlet; throw down the gauntlet.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.