get/have a handle on

idiom
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of get/have a handle on

informal
: to understand and be able to deal with (something)
  • I can't quite get a handle on the way this machine works.
  • It seemed like she had a good handle on the situation.

Word by Word Definitions

get play
  1. : to gain possession of

  2. : to receive as a return : earn

  3. : to obtain by concession or entreaty

  1. : something begotten:

  2. : offspring

  3. : the entire progeny of a male animal

  1. : a document of release from obligation in Jewish law

  2. : a religious divorce by Jewish law

handle play
  1. : a part that is designed especially to be grasped by the hand

  2. : something that resembles a handle

  3. : title

  1. : to try or examine (as by touching, feeling, or moving) with the hand

  2. : to manage with the hands

  3. : to deal with in writing or speaking or in the plastic arts


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