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grapple
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grapple


I’ve just begun to grapple with the problem.
  to struggle:

typically a mental struggle — as in coming to terms with something

more rarely a physical struggle — as in hand-to-hand combat or moving something heavy or awkward
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grapples grappling grapple grappled grappler
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Samples:
  • I’ve just begun to grapple with the problem.
  • the two men grappled with each other for several minutes
  • The consideration of these facts impresses my mind almost in the same manner as does the vain endeavour to grapple with the idea of eternity.
    Charles Darwin  --  The Origin of Species
  • enabled to grapple with all the difficulties and solve all the problems of life
    Edwin Abbott  --  Flatland

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  • I squirmed, wanting to show I had been grappling deeply with such questions.
    Mitch Albom  --  Tuesdays with Morrie
  • We bumped into each other and grappled.
    Jerry Spinelli  --  Milkweed
  • Forgetting that they were already invisible, they shrank into the shadows, staring at the dark outlines of two people grappling with each other ten feet away.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  • Connor leaves Hayden to grapple with authority and finds three of the largest kids in his field of vision.
    Neal Shusterman  --  Unwind
  • Suddenly understanding, I put my shoe in his hands, and he pushed me up as I grappled at the wall for some stability.
    Kiera Cass  --  The One
  • I was fascinated with the way that human beings had grappled with the ideas of absolute evil and absolute good tempered with love and free will.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Heavenly Fire

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  • The man held what looked like two huge rifles with grappling hooks on the ends attached to big coils of rope.
    James Dashner  --  The Kill Order
  • The hollow had used two of its tongues to grapple onto the capstones around the tunnel’s mouth as leverage against the mud, and it covered the entrance with its body like a lid on a jar.
    Ransom Riggs  --  Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children
  • The officer pulled his weapon and the two were grappling over the gun when it discharged, shooting the officer in the stomach.
    Bryan Stevenson  --  Just Mercy
  • The remaining guy pounces on me and we roll on the ground in a grapple for the top position.
    Susan Ee  --  Angelfall
  • Firemen, policemen and other rescue workers swarmed to the scene, armed with cutting torches, grappling hooks, blankets, stretchers and bags.
    Judy Blume  --  In the Unlikely Event
  • On trembling limbs, she grappled onto a nearby tree and hauled herself upright again.
    Sarah J. Maas  --  Throne of Glass
  • It was midafternoon, and the Prince had been grappling with the giant beast since morning, and finally, after all these hours, the hairy thing was weakening.
    William Goldman  --  The Princess Bride
  • Stiff, crooked fingers that grappled clumsily with Krimpet wrappers curled naturally around the shape of a baseball.
    Jerry Spinelli  --  Maniac Magee
  • Neighbor greeted neighbor with "Good morning" or "Good evening" or a friendly smile, and grappled with small problems behind closed doors.
    Ellen Raskin  --  The Westing Game
  • Oscar grappled up a rope to the top of the trebuchet arm, adding some initial downward motion.
    Joshua Davis  --  Spare Parts
  • Something aches at the very core of me, something ancient and deep and stronger than words: the filament that joins each of us to the root of existence, that ancient thing unfurling and resisting and grappling, desperately, for a foothold, a way to stay here, breathe, keep going.
    Lauren Oliver  --  Delirium
  • If he had been armed I am sure he would have leaped across the table and we would have grappled on the floor until either he or I had succumbed.
    Pat Conroy  --  The Water is Wide
  • I wanted to ask him to tell me in greater detail the circumstances of Maria’s death—probably not knowing at the time, however, that my subconscious was already beginning to grapple with that death as the germinal idea for the novel so lamentably hanging fire on my writing table.
    William Styron  --  Sophie’s Choice
  • Directly above them, Festus grappled with the earth goddess.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Blood of Olympus
  • I was pretty sure it was an innuendo, and I grappled for a way to change the subject.
    Becca Fitzpatrick  --  Hush, Hush
  • What she had made was called a grappling hook, which is something used for climbing up the sides of buildings, usually for a nefarious purpose.
    Lemony Snicket  --  The Bad Beginning
  • When we lived with him, you read all about nuptial law to find out about his plan, and I invented a grappling hook to put a stop to it.
    Lemony Snicket  --  The Reptile Room
  • The remnants of physical discomfort receded as I grappled with these uncomfortable thoughts.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • Meanwhile my mother — red-nosed and breathless from our dash through the rain—was grappling for her wallet.
    Donna Tartt  --  The Goldfinch
  • She has seen her grapple with the gut-wrenching decision to leave.
    Sonia Nazario  --  Enrique’s Journey
  • As we grappled, sometimes as men, sometimes as wolves, I saw that he was surprised by my fierceness.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Bones
  • They were grappling now on the muddy earth.
    Mitch Albom  --  The Five People You Meet in Heaven
  • I took hold of the turtle’s shell and grappled with one of its back flippers.
    Yann Martel  --  Life of Pi
  • The third button brought up a grappling hook that could be used to lock onto an enemy’s chariot or push it away.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Sea of Monsters
  • He went away on the word, leaving me with a new mystery to think of, a new puzzle to grapple with.
    Bram Stoker  --  Dracula
  • His befuddled brain grappled with the paradox unsuccessfully.
    Christopher Paolini  --  Eragon
  • A boy, I think from District 9, reaches the pack at the same time I do and for a brief time we grapple for it and then he coughs, splattering my face with blood.
    Suzanne Collins  --  The Hunger Games
  • Our path was inescapably zigzagged because Axe was always trying to find cover, stay out of the moonlight, as we grappled our way back up the cliff to way-point 3.
    Marcus Luttrell  --  Lone Survivor
  • You see, to me, for just a moment, despite all of the colors that touch and grapple with what I see in this world, I will often catch an eclipse when a human dies.
    Markus Zusak  --  The Book Thief
  • Leo dropped safely to the floor, but Dylan grappled the coach’s arms instead.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Lost Hero
  • The two grappled together, rolling across the deck.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Ashes
  • I seen him grapple four and knock their heads together—him unarmed.
    Robert Louis Stevenson  --  Treasure Island
  • Adam grappled with the door handle, turned it.
    Robert Cormier  --  I Am the Cheese
  • Athena campers threw grappling hooks around the largest giants and pulled them to the ground.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Last Olympian
  • Then I remembered how Bast had described her fight with Apophis: grappling with the enemy for eternity.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Red Pyramid
  • This family is, like so many others today, attempting to grapple with the many questions and the moral and ethical issues that surround the "birth" of HeLa, and the "death" of Mrs. Lacks.
    Rebecca Skloot  --  The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
  • August thrusts me away, and we grapple in the center of the tent.
    Sara Gruen  --  Water for Elephants
  • The mind finds answers, the heart grapples with new truths.
    Dan Brown  --  Angels & Demons
  • He fetched a load of stinking fish and a rusty grappling iron into my bedroom instead.
    Cornelia Funke  --  Inkheart
  • The lecture, she argued, would be an unnecessary diversion from the overwhelming issues we were grappling with in our lives.
    Randy Pausch  --  The Last Lecture
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Associated words [difficulty]:   grapple [1]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Engineering, Human Behavior, History
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