\ ˈgrip How to pronounce grip (audio) \
gripped; gripping

Definition of grip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to seize or hold firmly gripped the door handle
2 : to hold the interest of strongly a story that grips the reader



Definition of grip (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : a strong or tenacious grasp had a good grip on the tennis racket
b : strength in gripping
c : manner or style of gripping the balanced grip of an expert golfer
2a : a firm tenacious hold typically giving control, mastery, or understanding has the country in his grip
b : mental grasp can't seem to get a grip [=gain a good understanding of] on calculus … I'm curious to see if preteens have a grip on this fairly sophisticated concept.— John Hoffman
3 : a part or device for gripping
4 : a part by which something is grasped especially : handle
5 : suitcase
6a : a stage worker who handles scenery, properties, or lights : stagehand
b : a technician on a motion-picture or television set who handles and maintains equipment (such as cameras and their dollies and cranes)

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Other Words from grip


gripper noun

Synonyms for grip

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

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Examples of grip in a Sentence

Verb The little boy gripped his mother's hand tightly. I gripped the door handle and pulled as hard as I could. The story really grips the reader. The scandal has gripped the nation. Noun His tennis instructor showed him the proper backhand grip. a golfer with an incorrect grip He has been doing all he can to maintain his grip on the company's finances. I need new grips for my golf clubs.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb IndyCars also have no power steering and feature wider, softer tires to better grip the track and only an air-shield to keep a driver’s torso and head from the elements. Edgar Thompson,, "NASCAR legend Jimmie Johnson ‘all in’ on bold move to IndyCar racing," 24 Apr. 2021 Webb remains aware of the controversies that grip VAR elsewhere, particularly in his native England. Ian Nicholas Quillen, Forbes, "Howard Webb Explains How, Why Major League Soccer Does VAR Differently," 12 Apr. 2021 But cells that make antibodies with slightly different shapes, ones that do not grip the invading pathogen so firmly, are kept around, too. Monique Brouillette, Scientific American, "Your Immune System Evolves To Fight Coronavirus Variants," 31 Mar. 2021 Leather cases aren’t as bulky as large plastic cases and are generally easier to grip. Popsci Commerce Team, Popular Science, "Best iPhone cases for protection and style," 26 Feb. 2021 Moments before tipoff, when Green struggled to grip a basketball, he was ruled out — a development that played a role in the 130-77 loss Golden State went onto endure. Connor Letourneau, San Francisco Chronicle, "Warriors' Draymond Green to return from finger injury vs. Hawks," 4 Apr. 2021 These concerns come at a pretty bad time for Europe, as a third wave of infections threatens to grip the continent. Harmeet Kaur, CNN, "5 things to know for March 16: Covid, immigration, North Korea, Capitol riot, Vatican," 16 Mar. 2021 The latest anarchic event to grip the art world saw an anonymous guild of ‘art digitalists’ buy an original Bansky then set it ablaze – but not before digitizing the work into a non-fungible token (NFT). Lawrence Wintermeyer, Forbes, "Burned Banksy NFT Sets Art And Crypto Worlds Alight," 3 Mar. 2021 That’s the opposite of the soft, gummy consistency needed to grip the road, which is why summer tires are so bad when the seasons change. Dan Carney, Popular Science, "Everything you thought you knew about winter tires but didn’t," 12 Dec. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The rounded stitched grip handles are padded and adjustable. Chris Hachey, BGR, "Best Gym Duffel Bag for Your Next Workout," 13 May 2021 Turn-in response is natural and builds confidence in the front-end grip. Tony Quiroga, Car and Driver, "Tested: 2022 Volkswagen Golf GTI Still Defines The Hot Hatch," 13 May 2021 The decision to replace her as House GOP conference chair boldly underscores the firm grip Trump continues exert on many Republican lawmakers, who view his support as essential to winning back the House in 2022. Billy House, Fortune, "House GOP remove Liz Cheney from leadership post over frequent Trump criticism," 12 May 2021 The split grip might seem like a simple tweak in a world in which athletes spend entire careers adjusting tiny points of mechanics. Andrew Beaton, WSJ, "The Hitter Who Bats Like Ty Cobb," 12 May 2021 Here's why For those watching the standings, the loss further secured Detroit's grip on the NBA's secord-worst record, and, accordinglt, the second-best odds in the draft lottery next month. Omari Sankofa Ii, Detroit Free Press, "Saben Lee has huge night but Detroit Pistons fall to Minnesota Timberwolves, 119-100," 12 May 2021 Any less and the wax won’t have enough hair to grip during the removal process. Amber Katz, Glamour, "13 Things Your Bikini Waxer Wants You to Know," 11 May 2021 Trump’s agenda came at the end of a week that illustrated how tight Trump’s grip on the party remains. Time, "The 'America First' Revival Tour Throws a Trump Rally Without Trump," 8 May 2021 That triumvirate — especially the former president, whose grip on the party seems as firm as ever — virtually assures victory for Stefanik, 36, a onetime Trump critic who evolved into his strident ally. Alan Fram, Anchorage Daily News, "Stefanik’s rise toward leadership job irks conservatives," 8 May 2021

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


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for grip

Verb and Noun

Middle English grippen, from Old English grippan; akin to Old English grīpan

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Time Traveler for grip

Time Traveler

The first known use of grip was before the 12th century

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Statistics for grip

Last Updated

15 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Grip.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for grip



English Language Learners Definition of grip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to grab or hold (something) tightly
: to get and hold the interest or attention of (someone)



English Language Learners Definition of grip (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of grabbing or holding something
: a way or style of holding something
: power or control


\ ˈgrip How to pronounce grip (audio) \
gripped; gripping

Kids Definition of grip

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to grab or hold tightly
2 : to hold the interest of The story grips the reader.



Kids Definition of grip (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a strong grasp
2 : strength in holding : power the grip of winter
3 : understanding entry 1 sense 1 I finally have a grip on division.
4 : self-control Calm down and get a grip.

More from Merriam-Webster on grip

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for grip

Nglish: Translation of grip for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of grip for Arabic Speakers

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