verb (1)
\ ˈblench How to pronounce blench (audio) \
blenched; blenching; blenches

Definition of blench

 (Entry 1 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to draw back or turn aside from lack of courage : flinch


verb (2)
blenched; blenching; blenches

Definition of blench (Entry 2 of 2)

Synonyms & Antonyms for blench

Synonyms: Verb (1)

Synonyms: Verb (2)

Antonyms: Verb (2)

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Choose the Right Synonym for blench

Verb (1)

recoil, shrink, flinch, wince, blench, quail mean to draw back in fear or distaste. recoil implies a start or movement away through shock, fear, or disgust. recoiled at the suggestion of stealing shrink suggests an instinctive recoil through sensitiveness, scrupulousness, or cowardice. shrank from the unpleasant truth flinch implies a failure to endure pain or face something dangerous or frightening with resolution. faced her accusers without flinching wince suggests a slight involuntary physical reaction (such as a start or recoiling). winced in pain blench implies fainthearted flinching. stood their ground without blenching quail suggests shrinking and cowering in fear. quailed before the apparition

Did you know?

If a stranger approaches you in a dark alley, it might cause you to blench. Do you flinch or turn white? Actually, you could do both, and both would be considered blenching because there are two separate verbs spelled "blench" in English. The blench that means "to flinch" derives from blencan, an Old English word meaning "to deceive." The blench meaning "to turn white" is an alteration of blanch, from the French adjective blanc ("white"). Clues to which meaning is intended can often be found in context. The "flinch" use, for example, is strictly intransitive and often followed by from or at ("blenched from the sight of blood"; "didn’t blench at the sound of thunder"). The "whiten" use, meanwhile, can be intransitive ("his skin blenched with terror") or transitive ("the cold blenched her lips").

Examples of blench in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Voters bored by the whole subject may blench at the prospect. The Economist, 27 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'blench.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of blench

Verb (1)

13th century, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

1797, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for blench

Verb (1)

Middle English, to deceive, blench, from Old English blencan to deceive; akin to Old Norse blekkja to impose on

Verb (2)

alteration of blanch

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The first known use of blench was in the 13th century

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Cite this Entry

“Blench.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 May. 2022.

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