clenches, clenching, clenched
1) V-ERG When you clench your fist or your fist clenches, you curl your fingers up tightly, usually because you are very angry.

[V n] Alex clenched her fists and gritted her teeth...

She pulled at his sleeve and he turned on her, fists clenching again before he saw who it was.

[V-ed] ...angry protestors with clenched fists.

2) VERB When you clench your teeth or they clench, you squeeze your teeth together firmly, usually because you are angry or upset.

[V n] Patsy had to clench her jaw to suppress her anger...

[V-ed] Slowly, he released his breath through clenched teeth. [Also V]

3) VERB If you clench something in your hand or in your teeth, you hold it tightly with your hand or your teeth.

[V n] I clenched the arms of my chair.


English dictionary. 2008.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Clench — may refer to: In persons: Andrew Clench Ralfe Clench (ca 1762 1828), Canadian political figure Jim Clench (1949 2010), former member of the bands April Wine and Bachman–Turner Overdrive William J. Clench (1897 1984), American malacologist In… …   Wikipedia

  • clench — [ klentʃ ] verb 1. ) intransitive or transitive if you clench a part of your body such as your hand or your mouth, or if it clenches, you close it tightly, especially because you are angry or upset: He clenched his fists in frustration. I could… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • clench — clench, clinch Clinch is a 16c variant spelling of clench, and has since been regarded as a separate word. We clench our teeth, fingers, and fists; and we clinch an argument, bargain, or deal. Lovers clinch when they embrace closely, and so do… …   Modern English usage

  • Clench — Clench, n. & v. t. See {Clinch}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • clench — [klentʃ] v [T] [: Old English; Origin: beclencan] 1.) clench your fists/teeth/jaw etc to hold your hands, teeth etc together tightly, usually because you feel angry or determined ▪ Jody was pacing the sidelines, her fists clenched. 2.) to hold… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • clench — index constrict (compress) Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • clench — (v.) O.E. beclencan to hold fast, make cling, causative of clingan (see CLING (Cf. cling)); Cf. stink/stench. Related: Clenched; clenching. The noun is attested from 1799 …   Etymology dictionary

  • clench — [v] grasp clamp, clasp, clinch, clutch, constrict, contract, double up, draw together, grapple, grip, hold; concept 191 Ant. let go, loose, loosen, release …   New thesaurus

  • clench — ► VERB 1) (with reference to one s fist or teeth) close or press together tightly, in response to stress or anger. 2) (with reference to a set of muscles) contract sharply. 3) grasp tightly. ► NOUN ▪ the action of clenching or the state of being… …   English terms dictionary

  • clench — [klench] vt. [ME clenchen < OE clencan (in beclencan), lit., to make cling, caus. of clingan: see CLING] 1. CLINCH ( vt. 1) 2. to bring together tightly; close (the teeth or fist) firmly 3. to grip tightly n. 1. a firm grip …   English World dictionary

  • clench|er — «KLEHN chuhr», noun. 1. a person or thing that clenches. 2. Figurative. a decisive argument; clincher …   Useful english dictionary

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