• WordNet 3.6
    • v grapple to grip or seize, as in a wrestling match "the two men grappled with each other for several minutes"
    • v grapple come to terms with "We got by on just a gallon of gas","They made do on half a loaf of bread every day"
    • n grapple the act of engaging in close hand-to-hand combat "they had a fierce wrestle","we watched his grappling and wrestling with the bully"
    • n grapple a dredging bucket with hinges like the shell of a clam
    • n grapple a tool consisting of several hooks for grasping and holding; often thrown with a rope
    • ***
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
    • Grapple A grappling iron.
    • Grapple A seizing or seizure; close hug in contest; the wrestler's hold.
    • Grapple An instrument, usually with hinged claws, for seizing and holding fast to an object; a grab.
    • Grapple To fasten, as with a grapple; to fix; to join indissolubly. "The gallies were grappled to the Centurion.""Grapple them to thy soul with hoops of steel."
    • Grapple To seize; to lay fast hold of; to attack at close quarters: as, to grapple an antagonist.
    • v. i Grapple To use a grapple; to contend in close fight; to attach one's self as if by a grapple, as in wrestling; to close; to seize one another. "And in my standard bear the arms of York,
      To grapple with the house of Lancaster."
    • ***
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
    • n grapple A hook or an iron instrument by which one thing, as a ship, fastens on another; a grapnel.
    • n grapple A clasping-hook for grasping a beam, used in suspending the blocks or hoisting apparatus of a hay-fork.
    • n grapple Large tongs with sharp points used for various purposes, as for lifting blocks of ice.
    • n grapple The clasp of a buckle.
    • n grapple A spring fish-hook.
    • n grapple A seizing or gripping; especially, a close hold in wrestling, and hence in any other contest; a close fight or encounter.
    • grapple To seize or grasp with a grapple; lay fast hold on with mechanical appliances or with the hands: as, to grapple an antagonist.
    • grapple Synonyms To gripe, grasp, catch, clutch, clasp.
    • grapple To fasten on another, or on each other, as ships, by some mechanical means, as grappling-irons; seize another, or each other, in a close grip, as in wrestling; clinch: often used figuratively.
    • n grapple plural Small iron dogs, joined by a short chain, which are driven into logs near the end when skidding on mountains, so that several logs may be skidded by one horse at the same time. Also called chain-grapples, coupling-grab.
    • n grapple See skidding-tongs.
    • ***
Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary
    • v.t Grapple grap′l to seize: to lay fast hold of
    • v.i Grapple to contend in close fight
    • ***


  • William James
    “Men's activities are occupied into ways -- in grappling with external circumstances and in striving to set things at one in their own topsy-turvy mind.”
  • Joseph Joubert
    Joseph Joubert
    “Monuments are the grappling-irons that bind one generation to another.”
  • Sir James M. Barrie
    “Strength instead of being the lusty child of passion, grows by grappling with and subduing them.”


Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary
F. grappiller, OF. graypil, the grapple of a ship, fr. graper, to pluck, prop., to seize, clutch; of German origin. See Grape


In literature:

She is on night duty, and they are grappling with those awful cases all night as hard as they can go.
"Diary of a Nursing Sister on the Western Front, 1914-1915" by Anonymous
It was a life and death grapple for the mastery.
"The Southerner" by Thomas Dixon
This time it was to be a death grapple and our chances of victory still seemed good.
"Edison's Conquest of Mars" by Garrett Putman Serviss
But when the strain was off she sank into her seat and closed her eyes to grapple with the unnerving discovery.
"The Price" by Francis Lynde
They will urge and argue, little dreaming how I drew them, with a grappling-hook resolve to become a barnacle on their ship!
"Everyman's Land" by C. N. Williamson and A. M. Williamson
As each English vessel ranged alongside it threw grappling irons into the enemy, who were thus held fast.
"Flag and Fleet" by William Wood
A strong line, with another grapple, was then let down, and hooked into it with a jerk.
"Left on Labrador" by Charles Asbury Stephens
It was his death grapple.
"Dick Onslow" by W.H.G. Kingston
Recovering from the shock, Mr Canning set about the process of grappling for the lost cable with persistent energy.
"The Battery and the Boiler" by R.M. Ballantyne
They grappled and fell.
"The Big Otter" by R.M. Ballantyne

In poetry:

They grappled with their prize,
At midnight black and cold!
As of a rock was the shock;
Heavily the ground-swell rolled.
"By The Seaside : Sir Humphrey Gilbert" by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
But the bark was a kingly one,
It weathered the storms; I saw it run
Grappling with the stream and overcome
The vicious winds
"Biographia" by Samuel Alfred Beadle
Then, oh, how charming it would be
If, when in haste hysteric
You called the page, you learned that he
Was grappling with a lyric.
"Facility" by Robert W Service
His bondage all thy freedom bought,
He stoop'd so lowly down:
His grappling all thy grandeur brought,
Thy Husband's cross, thy crown.
"The Believer's Jointure : Chapter I." by Ralph Erskine
The sunsets fall and the sunsets fade,
But still I walk this shadowy land;
And grapple the dark and only the dark
In my search for a loving hand.
"Stanzas" by Henry Kendall
Did I hear a low echo of footfalls about,
Whilst watching those forest trees stark?
Or was it a dream that I hurried without
To clutch at and grapple the dark?
"Footfalls" by Henry Kendall

In news:

More Grappling With Raymond Chandler.
M-CHS will grapple on the road for the rest of the season.
Grappling with a new wrestling season.
Parents and children may need to realign their attitudes and expectations as they grapple with the economic turmoil that has troubled the country.
Northeast Ohio still grappling with power outages.
Jeff Blatnick liked to say that grappling , especially wrestling, existed "in almost every single culture, everywhere" for as long as man has walked the Earth.
Columbia grappling with water, sewer billing missteps.
When grappling is called for.
After grappling with decision, he's all in.
In this podcast, Bill Leff welcomes Jill Kreiman, the organizer of 'Roll for A Cause,' a grappling / Ju Jitsu tournament that benefits Make a Wish.
The first grappling tournament on the Western Slope featuring teams from throughout Colorado and surrounding states was a great success.
Human resource execs grappling with aging workforce.
Editor's View: City grappling with tough budget issues.
Former Redskins QB Mark Rypien, grappling with memory loss and other head injury symptoms, wants to make the NFL safer.
'Extremely Loud' has trouble grappling with Sept 11, too.

In science:

Corresponding experimental results are still few in number, partly because one is still grappling with the precise correspondence between the hypotheses of the theory and their experimental realization.
Intermittency and the passive nature of the magnitude of the magnetic field
The solar physics community has bene fited from increased interaction with the space physics community, the latter having decades more experience grappling with kinetic-scale plasma physics and MHD turbulence.
Coronal Heating versus Solar Wind Acceleration
Only the future will tell what the best means of grappling with this problem may be, or if in fact this is the right problem to pose.
String Field Theory
From a computer scientist’s perspective, we are grappling with the design of a cyber-physical system (CPS).
Definability in the Real Universe
In these data, students grapple with the apparent contradiction between the energy released when the phosphate bond in ATP is broken and the idea that an energy input is required to break a bond.
Students' Interdisciplinary Reasoning about "High-Energy Bonds" and ATP