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puzzle something out
to figure something out. It took me a while to puzzle it out. I can't puzzle out the meaning of this argument.
puzzle out somethingalso puzzle something out
to study something in order to understand it The reader shouldn't have to puzzle out what the writer means.. Related vocabulary: figure out something
Clarify or solve something, as in It took him a while to puzzle out the significance of the statement. [Late 1700s]
To come to a conclusion or find an answer, especially as the result of a careful thought process: I puzzled out the identity of the murderer before finishing the novel. The answer escaped me at first, but I finally puzzled the problem out.