\ ˈmȯl How to pronounce maul (audio) \

Definition of maul

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a heavy often wooden-headed hammer used especially for driving wedges also : a tool like a sledgehammer with one wedge-shaped end that is used to split wood


mauled; mauling; mauls

Definition of maul (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : beat, bruise
3 : to handle roughly

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Other Words from maul


mauler noun

Examples of maul in a Sentence


A bear killed one hiker and badly mauled the other. demonstrators who claimed that they had been mauled by the police

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Milton worked the ball into the offensive zone pretty steadily and scored on mauls near the goal line. Nate Weitzer,, "A perfect finish for Milton boys’ rugby: back-to-back D2 champs," 22 June 2019 Each time a beam was laid down, Ole laid down caulking and then drove in big metal spikes with a maul to hold the timbers together. Brian E. Clark, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "At Sparta's Grapevine Log Cabins, a bed and breakfast comes with a side of a working dairy farm," 23 Feb. 2018 Police also found a sock that the killer may have used when holding the maul. USA TODAY, "For sale: New York home where unsolved ax murder took place," 29 Sep. 2017 The ax and a maul, used for splitting wood, were found in the home. USA TODAY, "For sale: New York home where unsolved ax murder took place," 29 Sep. 2017 Paylor’s injury occurred during a maul, according to the Mercury News, which is when a group of players crunches together to create forward momentum on the player with the ball, while their opponents bind similarly and push back. Marissa Payne, The Denver Post, "Cal-Berkeley rugby player paralyzed after accident in national championship game," 11 May 2017

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The people who get mauled are the people who run, and climb trees, and yell at them. Douglas Main, National Geographic, "Grizzly bears saved this veteran's life. Now, he's returning the favor," 14 May 2019 They were mauled the Vikings run game and didn’t score any points until garbage time. oregonlive, "Atlanta Falcons outlast the Philadelphia Eagles: Recap, score, stats and more," 15 Sep. 2019 Notice the relentlessness of Roy Robertson-Harris, who was literally tackled (and illegally held) by Packers guard Lane Taylor yet still got up to maul Aaron Rodgers for a 10-yard sack. Dan Wiederer,, "What’s the formula for a Bears rebound against the Broncos in Week 2 — and for the rest of the season?," 10 Sep. 2019 Officials in Cape Cod are working to find out the person behind the lifelike fake legs that keep popping up at a memorial for a bodyboarder who died there in September after being mauled by a great white shark. Fox News, "Fake bloody legs appear at memorial for Cape Cod shark-attack victim," 22 July 2019 The Yankees would absolutely maul the Red Sox,’’ Davidoff wrote. Dan Shaughnessy,, "Random thoughts while waiting for Red Sox, MLB to get ratings shellacking," 8 Sep. 2019 The prime minister said the five deaths happened on those islands, which were mauled by Dorian over the weekend, and were still being lashed by the storm’s outer bands on Monday. New York Times, "Hurricane Dorian Batters Bahamas, Killing at Least 5: ‘a Historic Tragedy’," 1 Sep. 2019 Another violent accident has occurred in the compound that night: Don Antonio’s attractive wife Armida has been mauled by their guard dogs and taken to the ER to have 12 stitches. Deborah Young, The Hollywood Reporter, "'The Mayor of Rione Sanita' ('Il sindaco di Rione Sanita'): Film Review | Venice 2019," 30 Aug. 2019 One attack saw a New Yorker mauled at Longnook Beach, in Truro. Adam Gopnik, The New Yorker, "The Summer of Shark Politics on Cape Cod," 22 Aug. 2019

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


13th century, in the meaning defined above


13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for maul

Noun and Verb

Middle English malle mace, maul, from Anglo-French mail, from Latin malleus; akin to Old Church Slavonic mlatŭ hammer, Latin molere to grind — more at meal

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Time Traveler for maul

The first known use of maul was in the 13th century

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English Language Learners Definition of maul

: to attack and injure (someone) in a way that cuts or tears skin : to attack (someone) and cause a bloody injury
: to touch or handle (someone) in a rough sexual way


\ ˈmȯl How to pronounce maul (audio) \

Kids Definition of maul

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a heavy hammer used especially for driving wedges or posts
2 : a sledgehammer with one wedge-shaped end that is used to split wood


mauled; mauling

Kids Definition of maul (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to attack and injure by biting, cutting, or tearing flesh Not wishing to be mauled by the dogs … Curly had remained outside the gate …— Carl Hiaasen, Hoot
2 : to handle roughly

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More from Merriam-Webster on maul

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with maul

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for maul

Spanish Central: Translation of maul

Nglish: Translation of maul for Spanish Speakers

Comments on maul

What made you want to look up maul? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to fake an opponent out of position

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