Infomercial salesmen constantly tell you to seize the opportunity to buy their product while you still can. Supplies are limited! After all, everyone will want that solar-powered puppy petter, so you'd better grab the opportunity and buy two!

You can seize all kinds of things. Seize the day if you are taking advantage of the present circumstances and enjoying life to the fullest. Seize the castle, if you are a feudal lord fighting with your neighbor. Seize the inspiration if you want to tell a moving story. Seize authority if you are overthrowing a small country. Avoid, at all costs, being seized if you are under zombie attack.

Definitions of seize

v take hold of; grab

“The sales clerk quickly seized the money on the counter”
“The mother seized her child by the arm”
“Birds of prey often seize small mammals”
clutch, prehend
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seize suddenly
seize together, as of parallel ropes of a tackle in order to prevent running through the block
clutch as if in panic
apprehend, arrest, collar, cop, nab, nail, pick up
take into custody
capture, catch, get
succeed in catching or seizing, especially after a chase
seize by the neck or collar
grasp firmly
hold fast or firmly
take or grasp suddenly
catch, grab, take hold of
take hold of so as to seize or restrain or stop the motion of
snap, snatch, snatch up
to grasp hastily or eagerly
clench, clinch
hold in a tight grasp
grapple, grip
to grip or seize, as in a wrestling match
spear with a harpoon
catch or try to catch fish or shellfish
catch with a hook
net, nett
catch with a net
recapture, retake
capture again
swoop, swoop up
seize or catch with a swooping motion
intercept, stop
seize on its way
bite, seize with teeth
to grip, cut off, or tear with or as if with the teeth or jaws
nip, pinch, squeeze, tweet, twinge, twitch
squeeze tightly between the fingers
lasso, rope
catch with a lasso
Type of:
get hold of, take
get into one's hands, take physically

v capture the attention or imagination of

“The movie seized my imagination”
Type of:
fascinate, intrigue
cause to be interested or curious

v take or capture by force

“The terrorists seized the politicians”
“The rebels threaten to seize civilian hostages”
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obtain or seize by violence
obtain by seizing forcibly or violently, also metaphorically
abduct, kidnap, nobble, snatch
take away to an undisclosed location against their will and usually in order to extract a ransom
commandeer, highjack, hijack, pirate
take arbitrarily or by force
impress, shanghai
take (someone) against his will for compulsory service, especially on board a ship
subject an aircraft to air piracy
take someone's car from him by force, usually with the intention of stealing it
Type of:
get hold of, take
get into one's hands, take physically

v seize and take control without authority and possibly with force; take as one's right or possession

“She seized control of the throne after her husband died”
arrogate, assume, take over, usurp
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take (territory) as if by conquest
appropriate, capture, conquer
take possession of by force, as after an invasion
occupy or take possession of beforehand or before another or appropriate for use in advance
seize control of
take over (a company) by buying a controlling interest of its stock
capture after a fight
colonise, colonize
settle as a colony; of countries in the developing world
Type of:
take by force

v take possession of by force, as after an invasion

“the invaders seized the land and property of the inhabitants”
“The army seized the town”
appropriate, capture, conquer
capture after a fight
Type of:
arrogate, assume, take over, usurp
seize and take control without authority and possibly with force; take as one's right or possession

v take temporary possession of as a security, by legal authority

“The FBI seized the drugs”
attach, confiscate, impound, sequester
requisition forcibly, as of enemy property
appropriate (property) for public use
garnish, garnishee
take a debtor's wages on legal orders, such as for child support
confiscate by distress
Type of:
take into one's possession

v hook by a pull on the line

Type of:
catch with a hook

v affect

“Fear seized the prisoners”
“The patient was seized with unbearable pains”
“He was seized with a dreadful disease”
clutch, get hold of
Type of:
overcome, overpower, overtake, overwhelm, sweep over, whelm
overcome, as with emotions or perceptual stimuli

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