en·​trap | \ in-ˈtrap How to pronounce entrap (audio) , en- \
entrapped; entrapping; entraps

Definition of entrap

transitive verb

1 : to catch in or as if in a trap
2 : to lure into a compromising statement or act

Synonyms & Antonyms for entrap



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Choose the Right Synonym for entrap

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 entrap in a Sentence

We used the net to entrap a school of fish. The air bubbles were entrapped in ice. She felt that she was entrapped in an unhappy marriage.
Recent Examples on the Web Even large logs that appear immovable can crush or entrap victims underneath when a sneaker wave rolls in. oregonlive, 23 Apr. 2022 The tactic would entrap a large portion of the Ukrainian military in a pocket in the eastern part of the country, and cut it off from retreating towards Kyiv. Jeremy Kahn, Fortune, 17 Mar. 2022 Continuing the runaway semi-autonomous car example, imagine that the police don’t have enough police cars on the scene to entrap the bolting car. Lance Eliot, Forbes, 17 Mar. 2022 The federal suit, filed in San Francisco against Meta Platforms and Snap, claims the social media platforms operate on algorithms intentionally designed to entrap children and teens. Edmund H. Mahony, courant.com, 25 Jan. 2022 Often, a cover is all that is needed to entrap heat and keep the plants from frost or freezes. Tom Maccubbin, orlandosentinel.com, 18 Dec. 2021 His playbook of operations was called the Trout Memo – after the fly-fishing technique designed to entrap trout. Mike O'sullivan, Forbes, 23 Oct. 2021 In 2018, Egyptian authorities and residents were widely reported to have used Grindr and other dating apps to entrap and persecute gay men. NBC News, 14 Oct. 2021 On July 16, security forces posed as COVID-19 patients in order to entrap and arrest medical volunteers. Time, 6 Aug. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of entrap

1531, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for entrap

Middle French entraper, from en- + trape trap

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Last Updated

29 Apr 2022

Cite this Entry

“Entrap.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/entrap. Accessed 17 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for entrap


en·​trap | \ in-ˈtrap How to pronounce entrap (audio) \
entrapped; entrapping

Kids Definition of entrap

: to catch in or as if in a trap


transitive verb
en·​trap | \ in-ˈtrap How to pronounce entrap (audio) \
entrapped; entrapping

Legal Definition of entrap

: to cause (a person) to commit a crime by means of undue persuasion, encouragement, or fraud in order to later prosecute police entrap him into violating the literal terms of a criminal statute— W. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.

More from Merriam-Webster on entrap

Nglish: Translation of entrap for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of entrap for Arabic Speakers


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