What does wrest mean?

Definitions for wrest

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word wrest.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. wrestverb

    obtain by seizing forcibly or violently, also metaphorically

    "wrest the knife from his hands"; "wrest a meaning from the old text"; "wrest power from the old government"


  1. wrestverb

    To pull or twist violently.

  2. wrestverb

    To obtain by pulling or violent force.

  3. wrestverb

    To seize

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Wrestnoun

    Etymology: from the verb.

    Whereas it is concluded, out of those so weak premises, that the retaining of divers things in the church of England, which other reformed churches have cast out, must needs argue that we do not well, unless we can shew that they have done ill: what needed this wrest, to draw out from us an accusation of foreign churches? Richard Hooker.

    Adown he kest it with so puissant wrest,
    That back again it did aloft rebound,
    And gave against his mother earth a groneful sound. F. Q.

    Antenor is such a wrest in their affairs,
    That their negotiations all must slack’n,
    Wanting his manage. William Shakespeare, Troilus and Cressida.

  2. To WRESTverb

    Etymology: wræstan , Saxon.

    To wring this sentence, to wrest thereby out of men’s hands the knowledge of God’s doctrine, is without all reason. Roger Ascham.

    To what wretched state reserv’d,
    Better end here unborn! Why is life giv’n,
    To be thus wrested from us? John Milton, Paradise Lost.

    Where you charged in person, you were a conqueror: the rebels afterwards recovered strength, and wrested that victory from others that they had lost to you. Dryden.

    Our country’s cause,
    That drew our swords, now wrests ’em from our hand,
    And bids us not delight in Roman blood,
    Unprofitably shed. Joseph Addison, Cato.

    O prince, I blush to think what I have said;
    But fate has wrested the confession from me. Addison.

    So far to extend their speeches, is to wrest them against their meaning. Richard Hooker.

    My father’s purposes have been mistook,
    And some about him have too lavishly
    Wrested his meaning and authority. William Shakespeare, Henry IV.

    Wrest once the law to your authority;
    To do a great right, do a little wrong. William Shakespeare.


  1. wrest

    Wrest Park is a country estate located in Silsoe, Bedfordshire, England. It comprises Wrest Park, a Grade I listed country house, and Wrest Park Gardens, also Grade I listed, formal gardens surrounding the mansion.


  1. wrest

    Wrest refers to the act of forcibly pulling or twisting something from someone's grasp or control; taking something away with effort or difficulty. It can also mean to obtain something only with effort or by overcoming opposing forces.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Wrestverb

    to turn; to twist; esp., to twist or extort by violence; to pull of force away by, or as if by, violent wringing or twisting

  2. Wrestverb

    to turn from truth; to twist from its natural or proper use or meaning by violence; to pervert; to distort

  3. Wrestverb

    to tune with a wrest, or key

  4. Wrestnoun

    the act of wresting; a wrench; a violent twist; hence, distortion; perversion

  5. Wrestnoun

    active or moving power

  6. Wrestnoun

    a key to tune a stringed instrument of music

  7. Wrestnoun

    a partition in a water wheel, by which the form of the buckets is determined

  8. Etymology: [OE. wresten, AS. wrstan; akin to wr a twisted band, and wrn to twist. See Writhe.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Wrest

    rest, v.t, to twist from by force: to twist from truth or from its natural meaning.—n. violent pulling and twisting: distortion: an instrument, like a wrench, for tuning the piano, &c.—n. Wrest′er. [A.S. wrǽstanwrǽst, firm, from wráth, pa.t. of wríthan, to writhe; Dan. vriste.]

Matched Categories

Anagrams for wrest »

  1. strew

  2. trews

  3. werst

How to pronounce wrest?

How to say wrest in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of wrest in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of wrest in Pythagorean Numerology is: 4

Examples of wrest in a Sentence

  1. Victoria Smolkin:

    They're trying to wrest this legacy of Kievan Rus' for Russia and that's a really critical part of Putin's view of history and the role of Russian Orthodoxy in that history, what Russian President Vladimir Putin is claiming is that Russian President Vladimir Putin is restoring the natural God-given order of things : that the Ukrainians and Russians have always been one people and they all know that because they all come from Kievan Rus' and they're all Orthodox.

  2. Bhagavad Gita:

    As a man can drink water from any side of a full tank, so the skilled theologian can wrest from any scripture that which will serve his purpose.

  3. Benjamin Crump:

    We pray that for the sake of peace and safety and international relations that you rise to (the) occasion, and wrest control of the criminal investigation from the hands of county prosecutors in Washington state.

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Translations for wrest

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"wrest." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 17 Jun 2024. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/wrest>.

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    (of especially persons) lacking sense or understanding or judgment
    A dangerous
    B disjointed
    C witless
    D dependable

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