wrench

To wrench means to grab or pull something with a lot of physical force. See this teddy bear? If you want it, you’ll have to wrench it out of my hands, because I’m not willing to give it up.

Maybe you have a wrench at home, that is, a hand tool that is used to hold or twist a nut or a pipe joint. If so, you also have a great way to remember what wrench the verb means. Just imagine you're twisting with a wrench, except instead of using a tool, you’re using your hands. If something is heart wrenching, it makes you feel very sad. If you wrench a part of your body, you strain, pull or twist it, injuring yourself in some way.

Definitions of wrench
  1. noun
    a sharp strain on muscles or ligaments
    “the wrench to his knee occurred as he fell”
    synonyms: pull, twist
    see moresee less
    types:
    sprain
    a painful injury to a joint caused by a sudden wrenching of its ligaments
    type of:
    harm, hurt, injury, trauma
    any physical damage to the body caused by violence or accident or fracture etc.
  2. noun
    a jerky pulling movement
    synonyms: twist
    see moresee less
    type of:
    motion, movement
    a natural event that involves a change in the position or location of something
  3. noun
    a hand tool that is used to hold or twist a nut or bolt
    synonyms: spanner
    see moresee less
    types:
    show 22 types...
    hide 22 types...
    adjustable spanner, adjustable wrench
    can be changed to different settings
    Allen wrench
    a wrench for Allen screws
    alligator wrench
    a wrench with a v-shaped jaw and serrations on one side (resembles the open jaws of an alligator)
    box end wrench, box wrench
    a wrench with a closed loop (a socket) that fits over a nut or bolt head
    brace wrench
    a wrench shaped like a brace (has a handle shaped like a crank) and a socket head
    bulldog wrench
    a wrench designed to provide a firm grip on something
    carriage wrench
    a wrench designed for use with carriage bolts
    dog wrench
    a wrench with a handle shaped like a crank
    hook spanner, hook wrench
    a wrench with a hook that fits over a nut or bolt head
    lug wrench
    a wrench with jaws that have projecting lugs to engage the object that is to be rotated
    open-end wrench, tappet wrench
    a wrench having parallel jaws at fixed separation (often on both ends of the handle)
    pin wrench
    a wrench that has a projecting pin that fits into a socket on the object to be turned
    screw key
    a wrench for turning a screw
    socket wrench
    a wrench with a handle onto which sockets of different sizes can be fitted
    sparkplug wrench
    a wrench for removing or tightening spark plugs into the cylinder head of an internal combustion engine
    tap wrench
    a wrench for turning a tap to create an internal screw thread
    torque wrench
    a wrench that has a gauge that indicates the amount of torque being applied
    crescent wrench
    an adjustable wrench designed to fit hexagonal nuts with the adjusting screw built into the head of the wrench
    monkey wrench, monkey-wrench
    adjustable wrench that has one fixed and one adjustable jaw
    pipe wrench, tube wrench
    adjustable wrench for gripping and turning a pipe; has two serrated jaws that are adjusted to grip the pipe
    screw wrench
    adjustable wrench that has one jaw that can be adjusted by turning a screw
    S wrench
    a wrench with an S-shaped handle
    type of:
    hand tool
    a tool used with workers' hands
  4. verb
    twist or pull violently or suddenly, especially so as to remove (something) from that to which it is attached or from where it originates
    wrench a window off its hinges”
    wrench oneself free from somebody's grip”
    “a deep sigh was wrenched from his chest”
    synonyms: twist
    see moresee less
    type of:
    pull
    apply force so as to cause motion towards the source of the motion
  5. verb
    make a sudden twisting motion
    see moresee less
    type of:
    squirm, twist, worm, wrestle, wriggle, writhe
    to move in a twisting or contorted motion, (especially when struggling)
  6. verb
    twist and compress, as if in pain or anguish
    synonyms: wring
    contort, deform, distort, wring
    twist and press out of shape
    see moresee less
    type of:
    distort, twine, twist
    form into a spiral shape
  7. verb
    twist suddenly so as to sprain
    wrench one's ankle”
    synonyms: rick, sprain, turn, twist, wrick
    see moresee less
    type of:
    injure, wound
    cause injuries or bodily harm to
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