pin·​cer | \ ˈpin(t)-sər How to pronounce pincer (audio) , especially for sense 1 US often ˈpin-chər \

Definition of pincer

1a pincers plural : an instrument having two short handles and two grasping jaws working on a pivot and used for gripping things
b : a claw (as of a lobster) resembling a pair of pincers : chela

Other Words from pincer

pincerlike \ ˈpin(t)-​sər-​ˌlīk How to pronounce pincer (audio) \ adjective

Examples of pincer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But that returns us to Rottenborn’s list of all the pincer movements that close in on abuse victims. Jessica Winter, The New Yorker, 2 June 2022 Nearby, Russian forces were trying to push southward, part of a pincer move to trap the Ukrainian troops still holding a pocket of territory in the two eastern provinces of Donetsk and Luhansk. New York Times, 1 June 2022 This led to a pincer attack on their profit margins. Omer Riaz, Forbes, 26 May 2022 This may allow Russia to form a pincer in conjunction with a thrust pressing southward towards Lyman that could leave the veteran Ukrainian brigades in Severodonetsk encircled. Sebastien Roblin, Forbes, 22 May 2022 The assault from prices will be two-pronged, almost pincer-like. Rajrishi Singhal, Quartz, 26 Jan. 2022 What made this latest countercultural rebellion unique was its pincer attack. Matthew Continetti, National Review, 23 Oct. 2021 Flying from multiple bases and then meeting on the far side of Taiwan—creating a giant aerial pincer—would also show PLAAF's ability to coordinate different air units from different bases under a common headquarters. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, 21 June 2021 A few years ago, de Miranda helped examine whip spiders from three caves in Israel, two yielding the same species found in Jordan, Turkey, and Greece, and the third yielding something completely new, with weaker eyes and more pincer-spines. Eric Boodman, Wired, 29 May 2021 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'pincer.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of pincer

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for pincer

Middle English pinceour, from Anglo-French *pinceour, pinchure, from Anglo-French *pincher, pincer to pinch, from Vulgar Latin *pinctiare, *punctiare, from Latin punctum puncture — more at point

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

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Dictionary Entries Near pincer



pincer movement

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Last Updated

14 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Pincer.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Jun. 2022.

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More Definitions for pincer


pin·​cer | \ ˈpin-chər How to pronounce pincer (audio) , ˈpin-sər \

Kids Definition of pincer

1 pincers plural : a tool with two handles and two jaws for holding or gripping small objects
2 : a part (as the claw of a lobster) resembling a pair of pincers

More from Merriam-Webster on pincer

Nglish: Translation of pincer for Spanish Speakers


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