wrest

verb
\ ˈrest How to pronounce wrest (audio) \
wrested; wresting; wrests

Definition of wrest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to pull, force, or move by violent wringing or twisting movements
2 : to gain with difficulty by or as if by force, violence, or determined labor

wrest

noun

Definition of wrest (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the action of wresting : wrench
2 archaic : a key or wrench used for turning pins in a stringed instrument (such as a piano)

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Examples of wrest in a Sentence

Verb He tried to wrest control of the company from his uncle. the boy wrested the book out of his sister's hands
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The prospects have dimmed for Connecticut to wrest Wall Street’s back-office data infrastructure from New Jersey. Erica E. Phillips, courant.com, 14 Sep. 2021 The country's borders were closed, but it was not immediately known how much support Doumbouya had within the military, or whether other troops loyal to the president of more than a decade might attempt to wrest back control. Compiled Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 6 Sep. 2021 It was not immediately known, though, how much support Doumbouya had within the military or whether other soldiers loyal to the president of more than a decade might attempt to wrest back control. NBC News, 6 Sep. 2021 It was not immediately known, though, how much support Doumbouya had within the military or whether other soldiers loyal to the president of more than a decade might attempt to wrest back control. BostonGlobe.com, 5 Sep. 2021 Something similar might be said of the previous major attempts to wrest Frank Herbert’s 1965 literary colossus to the big screen, even if recent history has sometimes looked back on those failures with a forgiving smile. Justin Chang Film Critic, Los Angeles Times, 3 Sep. 2021 Two are flown into the World Trade Center towers in New York, one crashes into the Pentagon and another crashes into the Pennsylvania countryside after passengers attempt to wrest control of the aircraft to prevent an attack on the US Capitol. CNN, 2 Sep. 2021 The new assessment, which was ordered by President Biden 90 days ago, highlights the administration’s difficult challenge to wrest more information from Beijing that would shed light on how the global pandemic began. Michael R. Gordon, WSJ, 25 Aug. 2021 The mass graves in Tarhuna were found last year after the militia's withdrawal following the collapse of Hifter's 14-month campaign to wrest control of Tripoli from an array of militias allied with the former U.N.-recognized government. Samy Magdy, Star Tribune, 27 July 2021

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

Verb

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

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for wrest

Verb

Middle English wrasten, wresten, from Old English wrǣstan; akin to Old Norse reista to bend and probably to Old English wrigian to turn — more at wry

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Learn More About wrest

Time Traveler for wrest

Time Traveler

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

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Dictionary Entries Near wrest

wren warbler

wrest

wrest block

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Statistics for wrest

Last Updated

21 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Wrest.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/wrest. Accessed 21 Sep. 2021.

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More Definitions for wrest

wrest

verb

English Language Learners Definition of wrest

: to pull (something) away from someone by using violent twisting movements
: to take (something) from someone with much effort

wrest

verb
\ ˈrest How to pronounce wrest (audio) \
wrested; wresting

Kids Definition of wrest

1 : to pull away by twisting or wringing I had to wrest my shoe from the dog's mouth.
2 : to obtain only by great and steady effort "For this is the day we are to conquer His Majesty the Scarecrow, and wrest from him the throne."— L. Frank Baum, The Marvelous Land of Oz

More from Merriam-Webster on wrest

Nglish: Translation of wrest for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of wrest for Arabic Speakers

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