claw

noun, often attributive
\ˈklȯ \

Definition of claw 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a sharp usually slender and curved nail on the toe of an animal

2 : any of various sharp curved processes especially at the end of a limb (as of an insect) also : a limb ending in such a process

3 : one of the pincerlike organs terminating some limbs of various arthropods (such as a lobster or scorpion)

4 : something that resembles a claw specifically : the forked end of a tool (such as a hammer)

claw

verb
clawed; clawing; claws

Definition of claw (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to rake, seize, dig, or progress with or as if with claws

intransitive verb

: to scrape, scratch, dig, or pull with or as if with claws

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Other Words from claw

Noun

clawed \ ˈklȯd \ adjective
clawlike \ -​ˌlīk \ adjective

Examples of claw in a Sentence

Noun

The eagle was carrying a mouse in its sharp claws. The excavating machine's claw dug into the earth. the claw of a hammer

Verb

How can we stop the cat from clawing the drapes? The dog clawed a hole in the carpet. She tried to claw his face with her fingernails.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

On the ride, a claw grasping a helpless alien hovers overhead. Marjie Lambert, miamiherald, "Who are the real brains behind Disney's Toy Story Land? Not Buzz Lightyear," 29 June 2018 The vehicle built by the students included a camera, a LEGO claw, a control box equipped with a fuse and 3D printed motor covers. Susan Soldavin, Howard County Times, "St. Louis School team dives into robotics challenge [Clarksville]," 21 June 2018 In one clip, a SpotMini uses a strange claw thingy that vaguely resembles a face to open a door for another robot. Nestor Ramos, BostonGlobe.com, "Boston Dynamics will sell its terrifying robot dogs. What could go wrong?," 15 May 2018 All drinks can be ordered in an Alien Sipper which features a light-up claw as seen in the film. Shay Spence, PEOPLE.com, "Here's Everything You Can Eat at Disney World's Soon-to-Open Toy Story Land," 3 May 2018 And while recent design innovations may have only encouraged our collective technology addiction (hello, wireless charging furniture!), at least one outpost on the IKEA brand is here to relieve you of that cell phone claw. Devin Alessio, ELLE Decor, "This Table Makes You Put Down Your Phone For The Best Reason," 2 Feb. 2016 The bear is believed to be 16 to 18 months old, and only did minor damage to the kitchen with its claws, the newspaper reported. Mark Price, charlotteobserver, "Bold bear chases family and their pets from home, then cleans out their refrigerator," 3 July 2018 Pink, hairless and blind, the newborn koala uses its tiny claws and highly developed sense of smell to make the harrowing journey from its mother’s birth canal to her pouch. Deborah Netburn, latimes.com, "The koalas are threatened. Can their genome help us save them?," 2 July 2018 Their tracks, if well preserved, often feature the sharp points of claws. Sarah Kaplan, Washington Post, "Fossil hunting 101: Lessons from a self-taught dinosaur tracker," 16 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This weekend, however, Chevrolet has a great chance to claw closer to Honda. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: Scott Dixon scorching hot as IndyCar heads to Road America," 21 June 2018 Thiem finally broke Nadal at 3-3, but the Spanish champion clawed his way back into the set and saved a set point at 4-5 down, when Thiem hit a forehand long. New York Times, "Dominic Thiem Stuns Rafael Nadal on Madrid Clay," 11 May 2018 This stress on speed leads to more mistakes and accidental block placement, which is arguably more fun to claw out of than similar Tetris mistakes. Sam Machkovech, Ars Technica, "Lumines Remastered turns the Nintendo Switch into a full-body vibration party," 26 June 2018 Flex your hands: An early sign of hypothermia: claw hands. Popular Mechanics, "10 Survival Skills You Need To Know," 5 Mar. 2018 The opening match June 15 against Iran will be critical, as both group underdogs will be clawing to get three points early. Michelle Kaufman, miamiherald, "Spain, Portugal loaded with stars, but a Group B underdog could play role of spoiler | Miami Herald," 18 May 2018 But seemingly every time the Eagles clawed closer, the Vikings had an answer. Kyle Mcfadden, Howard County Times, "Mt. Hebron girls lacrosse advances to region final with win over rival Centennial," 15 May 2018 Among those losses were last year's sweep at Plainsman Park, when Alabama won the first two games before clawing out a 15-inning win to clinch the series on Sunday. Tom Green, AL.com, "Auburn, Alabama baseball face pivotal SEC series," 20 Apr. 2018 Focused almost exclusively on local issues, Lamb has nevertheless stumbled into a long-running debate about how the Democratic Party can claw its way back to the majority after 2016. Ella Nilsen, Vox, "It’s official: Democrat Conor Lamb wins Pennsylvania special election in major upset," 22 Mar. 2018

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

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First Known Use of claw

Noun

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for claw

Noun

Middle English clawe, from Old English clawu hoof, claw; akin to Old Norse klō claw, and probably to Old English cliewen ball — more at clew

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Statistics for claw

Last Updated

6 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for claw

The first known use of claw was before the 12th century

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More Definitions for claw

claw

noun

English Language Learners Definition of claw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a sharp curved part on the toe of an animal (such as a cat or bird)

: a body part of an animal (such as a lobster or crab) that is used for gripping and holding things

: a part on a tool or machine that is used for gripping, digging, etc.

claw

verb

English Language Learners Definition of claw (Entry 2 of 2)

: to scratch, grip, or dig with claws or fingers

claw

noun
\ˈklȯ \

Kids Definition of claw

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a sharp usually thin and curved nail on the finger or toe of an animal (as a cat or bird)

2 : the end of a limb of some animals (as an insect, scorpion, or lobster) that is pointed or used for grasping

claw

verb
clawed; clawing

Kids Definition of claw (Entry 2 of 2)

: to scratch, seize, or dig with claws or fingers They clawed a hole in the beach sand.

claw

noun
\ˈklȯ \

Medical Definition of claw 

: a sharp usually slender and curved nail on the toe of an animal

Other Words from claw

clawed \ ˈklȯd \ adjective

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More from Merriam-Webster on claw

Spanish Central: Translation of claw

Nglish: Translation of claw for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of claw for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about claw

Comments on claw

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