See more synonyms for wrangle on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object), wran·gled, wran·gling.
  1. to argue or dispute.
  2. to tend or round up (cattle, horses, or other livestock).
  3. to obtain, often by contrivance or scheming; wangle: He wrangled a job through a friend.
  1. a noisy or angry dispute; altercation.

Origin of wrangle

1350–1400; Middle English, apparently < Low German wrangeln, frequentative of wrangen to struggle, make an uproar; akin to wring
Related formsout·wran·gle, verb (used with object), out·wran·gled, out·wran·gling.un·wran·gling, adjective
Can be confusedwangle wrangle

Synonyms for wrangle

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1, 5. quarrel, brawl. 5. argument.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for wrangling

Contemporary Examples of wrangling

Historical Examples of wrangling

  • We have a few moments to spare; let us not waste them in talk like wrangling women.

    The Last of the Mohicans

    James Fenimore Cooper

  • "In God's name let us keep from wrangling," the Duke besought them.

    Mistress Wilding

    Rafael Sabatini

  • Harris, wrangling with another workman, was now seen approaching.

  • There was riot, wrangling, hubbub and cursing, till the hour of evening prayer.

  • War came on while governors and assemblies were wrangling to no purpose.

British Dictionary definitions for wrangling


  1. (intr) to argue, esp noisily or angrily
  2. (tr) to encourage, persuade, or obtain by argument
  3. (tr) Western US and Canadian to herd (cattle or horses)
  1. a noisy or angry argument

Word Origin for wrangle

C14: from Low German wrangeln; related to Norwegian vrangla
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

Word Origin and History for wrangling



late 14c., from Low German wrangeln "to dispute, to wrestle," related to Middle Low German wringen, from Proto-Germanic *wrang-, from PIE *wrengh-, nasalized variant of *wergh- "to turn" (see wring). Related: Wrangled; wrangling. The noun is recorded from 1540s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper