en·​snare | \ in-ˈsner How to pronounce ensnare (audio) , en- \
ensnared; ensnaring; ensnares

Definition of ensnare

transitive verb

: to take in or as if in a snare

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Synonyms & Antonyms for ensnare



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catch, capture, trap, snare, entrap, ensnare, bag mean to come to possess or control by or as if by seizing. catch implies the seizing of something in motion or in flight or in hiding. caught the dog as it ran by capture suggests taking by overcoming resistance or difficulty. capture an enemy stronghold trap, snare, entrap, ensnare imply seizing by some device that holds the one caught at the mercy of the captor. trap and snare apply more commonly to physical seizing. trap animals snared butterflies with a net entrap and ensnare more often are figurative. entrapped the witness with a trick question a sting operation that ensnared burglars bag implies shooting down a fleeing or distant prey. bagged a brace of pheasants

Examples of ensnare in a Sentence

The animals got ensnared in the net. The police successfully ensnared the burglar.
Recent Examples on the Web The reasons include confusing marketing gimmicks used by companies to ensnare consumers. Dave Lieber, Dallas News, "Please, can we talk about something else?," 5 Nov. 2020 Furthermore, the extra illnesses and deaths almost certainly reached beyond the ardent Trump supporters who attended the rallies, rippling outward to ensnare others in their towns and cities, the study authors said. Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times, "Super-spreading Trump rallies led to more than 700 COVID-19 deaths, study estimates," 31 Oct. 2020 The spiders either lunge at bugs wandering below or flip backward to ensnare flying insects’ midair. Lucy Hicks, Science | AAAS, "These frightening ogre-faced spiders use their legs to ‘hear’," 29 Oct. 2020 The plan was to ensnare him using a net shot out of a specialized gun, but the gun did not fire. Nora Mishanec, SFChronicle.com, "Gerald the turkey removed from Oakland’s Morcom Rose Garden after terrorizing visitors," 23 Oct. 2020 And an ongoing investigation into who funded the Noor One threatens to ensnare Greek oligarch Evangelos Marinakis, one of the most powerful figures in global shipping and soccer. Alexander Clapp, The New Republic, "The Vampire Ship," 28 Sep. 2020 Lucero stayed within the pocket for the majority of the contest but proved his physicality in taking a few big hits and enthusiastically popping up to ensnare confidence from his team. Evan Dudley, al, "Lucero’s impressive debut leads UAB to 42-10 win at South Alabama," 24 Sep. 2020 That means setting more traps, but this time, a different kind—ones with a screen over the bait that ensnare the hornet without drowning it. Megan Molteni, Wired, "Inside the Sprint to Map the Murder Hornet Genome," 24 Aug. 2020 Energy utility ComEd pleaded not guilty to bribery at an arraignment Wednesday despite previously admitting wrongdoing in an influence-peddling scheme that threatens to ensnare Illinois' most powerful Democrat, state House Speaker Michael Madigan. Michael Tarm, Star Tribune, "ComEd pleads not guilty in alleged influence-peddling scheme," 5 Aug. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'ensnare.' 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 ensnare

1576, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for ensnare

Time Traveler

The first known use of ensnare was in 1576

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Statistics for ensnare

Last Updated

9 Nov 2020

Cite this Entry

“Ensnare.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ensnare. Accessed 30 Nov. 2020.

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More Definitions for ensnare


How to pronounce ensnare (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of ensnare

: to catch (an animal or person) in a trap or in a place from which there is no escape

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Nglish: Translation of ensnare for Spanish Speakers

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