grapnel

noun
grap·​nel | \ ˈgrap-nᵊl How to pronounce grapnel (audio) \

Definition of grapnel

: a small anchor with usually four or five flukes used especially to recover a sunken object or to anchor a small boat — see anchor illustration

First Known Use of grapnel

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for grapnel

Middle English grapenel, from Anglo-French grapinel, diminutive of Middle French grapin, diminutive of Old French grape hook, grape stalk, bunch of grapes — more at grape

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The first known use of grapnel was in the 14th century

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Cite this Entry

“Grapnel.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/grapnel. Accessed 22 Jan. 2021.

More from Merriam-Webster on grapnel

Nglish: Translation of grapnel for Spanish Speakers

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