en·​tan·​gle | \ in-ˈtaŋ-gəl How to pronounce entangle (audio) , en- \
entangled; entangling; entangles

Definition of entangle

transitive verb

1a : to wrap or twist together : interweave
2a : to involve in a perplexing or troublesome situation became entangled in a lawsuit
b : to make complicated the story is entangled with legends

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Other Words from entangle

entangler \ in-​ˈtaŋ-​g(ə-​)lər How to pronounce entangler (audio) , en-​ \ noun

Examples of entangle in a Sentence

in the process of taking down the Christmas tree, we managed to entangle the string of lights into a hopeless mess of wires the young runaway gradually became entangled in a web of lies
Recent Examples on the Web But despite Democratic hopes, Chief Justice Roberts is unlikely to want entangle himself in a dispute that has been so thoroughly politicized. Nicholas Fandos, New York Times, "Lamar Alexander, Key G.O.P. Senator, Plans to Oppose Move for New Evidence," 30 Jan. 2020 Yet some pastors in Rio de Janeiro have become entangled in violence, the drug trade, political corruption, and the exploitation of Brazil’s poor. Alex Cuadros, Harper's magazine, "“My Gang Is Jesus”," 30 Jan. 2020 Willis Johnson also was entangled in the federal investigation into the dealings of Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price but never faced any charges as part of the investigation. Obed Manuel, Dallas News, "Dallas County awards $1.9 million contract for census outreach," 7 Jan. 2020 Each of those tiny particles is tightly entangled, at the quantum level, to the part of the information that couldn’t escape the black hole. Maria Paula Rubiano, Popular Science, "What would happen if you fell into a black hole?," 2 Jan. 2020 For years, the BSA has been entangled in costly litigation with plaintiffs who said they were abused by scout leaders in their youth. David Crary, The Denver Post, "Boy Scouts to boost annual youth fees by more than 80%," 31 Oct. 2019 Thousands of whales are struck by ships, entangled in fishing lines, and harmed by ocean noise every year. Joe Roman, The Conversation, "Iceland didn’t hunt any whales in 2019 – and public appetite for whale meat is fading," 21 Jan. 2020 The publication, which Markle felt was essentially trolling her by releasing personal information without consent, is now entangling her in yet another mess with her father: their defense strategy. Sarah Midkiff, refinery29.com, "Meghan Markle’s Father Could End Up Testifying Against Her In Court," 15 Jan. 2020 Commissioner Dennis Richards is expected to relinquish his seat on the commission after entangling himself in a thorny property dispute. Trisha Thadani, SFChronicle.com, "Planning Commission president to step down to run for San Francisco supervisor," 13 Jan. 2020

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for entangle

Middle English, from Anglo-French entangler — more at tangle entry 1

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Time Traveler for entangle

Time Traveler

The first known use of entangle was in the 15th century

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Statistics for entangle

Last Updated

15 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Entangle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/entangle. Accessed 21 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for entangle


How to pronounce entangle (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of entangle

: to cause (something) to get caught in or twisted with something else
: to get (someone) involved in a confusing or difficult situation


en·​tan·​gle | \ in-ˈtaŋ-gəl How to pronounce entangle (audio) \
entangled; entangling

Kids Definition of entangle

1 : to make tangled or confused Don't entangle the ropes.
2 : to catch in a tangle Birds were entangled in the net.

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