crutch

noun
\ ˈkrəch How to pronounce crutch (audio) \

Definition of crutch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a support typically fitting under the armpit for use by the disabled in walking
b : a source or means of support or assistance that is relied on heavily or excessively They refuse to take any pills. They don't want to use drugs as a crutch.— Maya Pines Even many atheists would agree that believing that God cares about you or that your life is part of a cosmic plan can be a powerful source of hope (or, to put it pejoratively, a crutch).— Virginia Postrel
2 : a forked leg rest constituting the pommel of a sidesaddle
3 : the crotch of a human being or an animal
4 : a forked support

crutch

verb
crutched; crutching; crutches

Definition of crutch (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to support on crutches : prop up

Examples of crutch in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Outside linebacker Matthew Tago didn’t wear a boot, but got around on one crutch. oregonlive, "Oregon State takes a satisfying 45-7 win over Cal Poly into an off week, but injuries are mounting," 15 Sep. 2019 Patricia, who's recovering from surgery on his left Achilles tendon, spent the first half of Sunday's season opener against the Arizona Cardinals coaching on crutches from the Lions sideline. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Detroit Lions' Matt Patricia ditches Gatorade stand, coaches on crutches in opener," 8 Sep. 2019 Smith turned up at camp sporting crutches, trying in any way to help out and earn his $15 million contract for this season. Carl Steward, The Mercury News, "13 questions the 2019 NFL season will answer, from the Browns to Mahomes," 4 Sep. 2019 Jennings, 55, had been ordered to clear out a storage shed because of the approaching storm and his contents, from crutches to a barbecue grill, were in a disorganized pile in the back of his pickup. Kevin Spear, orlandosentinel.com, "Hurricane Dorian wrecks Labor Day break at Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral," 1 Sep. 2019 Something that went all-in on the electric benefits while casting away the internal-combustion crutches. Ezra Dyer, Popular Mechanics, "I Got 75 Miles Per Gallon...in a Range Rover?," 11 Aug. 2019 All told, six managed some form of walking across the ground with assistance such as harnesses, crutches or parallel bars. Cassandra Willyard, Scientific American, "How a Revolutionary Technique Got People with Spinal-Cord Injuries Back on Their Feet," 7 Aug. 2019 Patricia coached the game on crutches because of his summer Achilles surgery, and as such was backed off the sideline and not in direct communication with officials. Dave Birkett, Detroit Free Press, "Inside the Detroit Lions: Explaining what happened on play after timeout," 10 Sep. 2019 There was Nick Robinson on crutches, looking like the brother of the boy who died in my book. People Staff, PEOPLE.com, "John Searles Wrote Strange But True — and Then Starred in the Film Adaptation with Greg Kinnear," 6 Sep. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Thorson, now a grad student holding an undergraduate degree in communication studies, remains the relentlessly positive team-first guy who insisted on crutching to the NU sideline to watch the second half of the Music City Bowl. Teddy Greenstein, chicagotribune.com, "First words: Northwestern QB Clayton Thorson talks ACL prognosis, marriage and why he ‘can’t skip steps’," 2 July 2018 Scalise still needs either crutches or a cane to get around after having nine surgeries to repair his pelvis, hip and left femur left shattered by bullets, CNN reported. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "Rep. Steve Scalise to return to field one year after Congressional Baseball shooting," 14 June 2018 When Purdue played Nebraska about a month later, Tyler Trent crutched out to midfield for the coin toss. Gregg Doyel, Indianapolis Star, "Doyel: Purdue freshman can't make tourney, but cancer is just an inconvenience," 15 Mar. 2018 He was recorded crutching down a hallway at Arrowhead Stadium Sunday. Jacob Klinger, cleveland.com, "Steelers short 3 offensive, 2 defensive starters," 18 Oct. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of crutch

Noun

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

Verb

1609, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for crutch

Noun

Middle English crucche, from Old English crycc; akin to Old High German krucka crutch

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about crutch

Dictionary Entries near crutch

crust roan

crusty

crut

crutch

crutcher

crutch strike

cruth

Statistics for crutch

Last Updated

7 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for crutch

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for crutch

crutch

noun

English Language Learners Definition of crutch

: a long stick with a padded piece at the top that fits under a person's arm
usually disapproving : something that a person uses too much for help or support

crutch

noun
\ ˈkrəch How to pronounce crutch (audio) \

Kids Definition of crutch

1 : a long stick usually made with a piece at the top to fit under the armpit that is used as an aid in walking
2 : something that a person depends on to help deal with problems The child uses his blanket as a crutch to feel more secure.

crutch

noun
\ ˈkrəch How to pronounce crutch (audio) \

Medical Definition of crutch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a support typically fitting under the armpit for use as an aid in walking
2 : the crotch especially of an animal

Medical Definition of crutch (Entry 2 of 2)

: to support on crutches

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on crutch

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crutch

Spanish Central: Translation of crutch

Nglish: Translation of crutch for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crutch for Arabic Speakers

Comments on crutch

What made you want to look up crutch? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

tired or exhausted

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Where in the World? A Quiz

  • peter bruegel tower of babel painting
  • What language does pajama come from?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!