grasp the nettle

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Related to nettle: stinging nettle

grasp the nettle

To approach or begin a difficult or unpleasant task directly and with the appropriate amount of energy. I know you don't like disciplining employees, but you've just got to grasp the nettle.
See also: grasp

grasp the nettle

mainly BRITISH
COMMON If you grasp the nettle, you deal with a problem or unpleasant task quickly and in a determined way. I think you should grasp the nettle. Speak to your manager and make it clear you regret your mistake and are determined it will never happen again. European leaders have yet to grasp the nettle of labour-market reform. Note: If you grasp a nettle firmly, it is less likely to sting you than if you just touch it lightly.
See also: grasp

grasp the nettle

tackle a difficulty boldly. British
This expression refers to a belief (recorded from the late 16th century onwards) enshrined in a rhyme quoted in Sean O'Casey's Juno and the Paycock ( 1925 ): ‘If you gently touch a nettle it'll sting you for your pains; grasp it like a lad of mettle, an’ as soft as silk remains'.
1998 New Scientist The problem was that governments failed to grasp the nettle and scrap the system.
See also: grasp

grasp the ˈnettle

(British English) deal with a difficult matter, firmly and with courage: The government will have to grasp the nettle. If they don’t, the traffic congestion is going to get out of control.This expression refers to the belief that if you touch a nettle (= a plant with leaves that sting) lightly, you will be hurt, but not if you take a firm hold if it.
See also: grasp

grasp the nettle

To take on a difficult problem directly and energetically.
See also: grasp
References in periodicals archive ?
The Studies involving stinging nettle for prostatitis:
In 2017, I interviewed Solihull's own champion nettle scoffer Jon Searle and he candidly revealed the torture behind taking the title.
Once I had established the alarming and disappointing fact that all the chrysalides I could find had been parasitised, I pulled out the nettle plants and left them to decompose on the ground, where they dried out and dropped their dreaded abundance of seeds.
"Basically, as soon as the spring starts, he told me, and the first nettles sprout out, pick a bunch and sting myself with them.
Growing the nettles was a change of pace for Alnwick Garden's head gardener Trevor Jones.
But how do nettles help?There is actually some science behind why nettles prevent hayfever.
The study found that the ocean-based sea nettle jellyfish is larger and has approximately 40 percent more tentacles than its bayside counterpart.
After gathering the nettles using thick gloves to avoid stings, chop them finely with shears or garden scissors, avoiding roots and seeded plants.
In its ongoing efforts to protect the ecological health of Barnegat Bay, the Department of Environmental Protection will host a series of Barnegat Bay Bulkhead Blitz events this month to demonstrate simple steps waterfront property owners can take to help reduce populations of sea nettles, a type of stinging and highly predatory jellyfish that can diminish recreational enjoyment of the bay and create ecological imbalance.
Extracts of four plant portions (roots, stems, leaves and flowers) of Urtica dioica (the stinging nettle) were prepared using accelerated solvent extraction (ASE) involving water, hexanes, methanol and dichloromethane.
Los Angeles, CA, October 03, 2012 --(PR.com)-- Savage Designs(TM) has released its first fashion and beauty collection this fall including a complete line of ready-to-wear designs made from wild plant materials like stinging nettles, milkweed fibers, among other plants and Medicinal Clothing which has been infused with highly concentrated, wild medicinal plant dyes.
Farro pasta with nettles and sausage Time: About 20 minutes 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 large onion, diced small Salt and pepper 1 pound hot Italian fennel sausage, casings removed (see recipe for homemade sausage) 4 garlic cloves, minced 1 tablespoon tomato paste 1 pound farro pasta (or another type of dried pasta) 1 pound rinsed nettle leaves (or other greens, like bok choy or mustard, roughly chopped) Ricotta salata cheese for grating (or Romano or Parmesan).