en·​trench | \ in-ˈtrench , en-\
variants: or less commonly \ in-​ˈtrench \
entrenched also intrenched; entrenching also intrenching; entrenches also intrenches

Definition of entrench

transitive verb

1a : to place within or surround with a trench especially for defense
b : to place (oneself) in a strong defensive position
c : to establish solidly entrenched themselves in the business
2 : to cut into : furrow specifically : to erode downward so as to form a trench

intransitive verb

1 : to dig or occupy a trench for defensive purposes
2 : to enter upon or take over something unfairly, improperly, or unlawfully : encroach used with on or upon

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Other Words from entrench

entrenchment \ in-​ˈtrench-​mənt , en-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for entrench


bed, embed (also imbed), enroot, fix, impact, implant, ingrain (also engrain), lodge, root


dislodge, root (out), uproot

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Examples of entrench in a Sentence

officials who have tried to entrench themselves in office a father who entrenched in our minds the belief that hard work pays off

Recent Examples on the Web

Though the layered look is firmly entrenched in Hollywood, the fashion world has lately been catching on to the neat, graphic impact of the blunt cut. Eviana Hartman, Vogue, "The 19 Best Blunt Cuts of All Time, From Jane Birkin to Gwyneth Paltrow," 26 Dec. 2018 The weather pattern remains quite moody, with the cold air still firmly entrenched across Canada. Dave Epstein, BostonGlobe.com, "Ahead of Marathon Monday, it’s back to winter temperatures," 13 Apr. 2018 With every elapsing year since his death in 1946, Jack Johnson’s name became further entrenched in boxing archives. Santos A. Perez, miamiherald, "Trump's pardon of Johnson 'was way overdue' | Miami Herald," 27 May 2018 The May 12 election appeared to result in a surprising victory for the coalition led by a Shiite cleric, Moktada al-Sadr, overturning a political establishment that has been entrenched since 2005. Margaret Coker, New York Times, "Iraqi Council to Oversee Manual Recount Amid Post-Election Chaos," 7 June 2018 While possibly not permanent, another position outside left field could be big for both Stewart and the Orioles with Trey Mancini entrenched there for the foreseeable future. Jon Meoli, baltimoresun.com, "Orioles using spring training to test former first-round pick DJ Stewart in right field," 8 Mar. 2018 In contrast to white spaces, police are thoroughly entrenched in the lives of youths of color and the institutional fabric of their neighborhoods. Vesla Mae Weaver, Vox, "The Kavanaugh hearings show who we afford a second chance and who we don’t," 28 Sep. 2018 Since the company launched, Kalam's been entrenched in what furniture sells fast — and what truly retains its value. Danielle Tullo, House Beautiful, "Here's Exactly What Furniture Retains Its Value The Best Over Time," 31 Aug. 2018 And that, paradoxically, entrenches Republican support. The Economist, "A cruel and unusual border policy," 2 June 2018

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

1548, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1a

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Statistics for entrench

Last Updated

8 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for entrench

The first known use of entrench was in 1548

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English Language Learners Definition of entrench

: to place (someone or something) in a very strong position that cannot easily be changed

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More from Merriam-Webster on entrench

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with entrench

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for entrench

Spanish Central: Translation of entrench

Nglish: Translation of entrench for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of entrench for Arabic Speakers

Comments on entrench

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irregularly rounded

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