clench

verb \ ˈklench \

Definition of clench

transitive verb
1 :clinch 2
2 :to hold fast :clutch
  • clenched the arms of the chair
3 :to set or close tightly
  • clench one's teeth
  • clench one's fists

clench

noun

Examples of clench in a Sentence

  1. He clenched his teeth and continued to look straight ahead.

  2. He clenched his fists in anger.

  3. She was angry and spoke quietly through clenched teeth.

  4. His jaw clenched and unclenched as he listened to the speech.

  5. She danced alone, with a rose clenched in her teeth.

  6. He was clenching a cigarette in his teeth.

Recent Examples of clench from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of clench

Middle English, from Old English -clencan; akin to Old English clingan to cling


CLENCH Defined for English Language Learners

clench

verb

Definition of clench for English Language Learners

  • : to set (something) in a tightly closed position

  • : to hold (something) tightly


CLENCH Defined for Kids

clench

verb \ ˈklench \

Definition of clench for Students

clenched; clenching
1 :to hold tightly :clutch
  • She clenched a pen in her hand.
2 :to set or close tightly
  • “I'll sit and clench my teeth and never tell you one thing.”
  • —Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden


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