Definition of winch
1 : any of various machines or instruments for hauling or pulling; especially : a powerful machine with one or more drums on which to coil a rope, cable, or chain for hauling or hoisting : windlass
2 : a crank with a handle for giving motion to a machine (such as a grindstone)
Recent Examples of winch from the Web
Passengers have had to climb a 20-foot ladder, or be hoisted in a winch, to get to the top of Cold Bay's dock, which extends hundreds of feet from shore.
But the beauty ended with the winches, spades and slicers of a factory ship, in a slick of oil and blood.
A spare tire and a winch were reported stolen at 6:17 p.m. July 6 in the 500 block of Sunset Avenue.
To save even more money, Ganbare sailed with the most basic instruments and winches.
Older spent another $5,000 on huge poles, cables, a special winch and site preparations.
The winch is torn from the boat and tumbles into the ocean, landing on top of the dive cage and blocking the cage's door.
Firefighters used a winch to move the car and then broke out a window to reach her.
The fire crew used the winch to lift the car onto its side.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'winch.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of winch
Middle English winche roller, reel, from Old English wince; akin to Old English wincian to wink
First Known Use: before 12th centurySee Words from the same year
Definition of winch
: to hoist or haul with or as if with a winch
First Known Use of winch
WINCH Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of winch for English Language Learners
: a machine that has a rope or chain and that is used for pulling or lifting heavy things
WINCH Defined for Kids
Definition of winch for Students
: a machine that has a roller on which rope is wound for pulling or lifting
Seen and Heard
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