wrest

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wrest (someone or something) (away) from (someone or something)

1. To take someone or something away from someone or something by pulling in a violent, wrenching manner. The man has been hailed as a hero for wresting the gun away from the shooter before anyone was harmed. The officers wrested my son from me before I had the chance to run.
2. To manage to obtain control or possession of something through some battle, struggle, or conflict with someone or something else. The rebels wrested power from the dictatorship after five years of war. The political party finally managed to wrest control of congress away from their opponents for the first time in 10 years. You'll have to wrest the kids away from me in the courts.
3. To obtain or extract something, such as information, from someone or something, especially after much difficulty or persistence. We were finally able to wrest some answers from the spy we were interrogating. I've never been able to wrest any meaning away from abstract paintings—they always look just like splatters of paint to me.
See also: wrest

wrest (someone or something) out of (someone or something)

1. To remove or take away someone or something from something or some place with a great twisting force. He wrested the gun out of the attacker's hands. I managed to wrest the iron bar out of the cement before it had set completely.
2. To remove or take away someone or something from some place with violence, intimidation, or force. Often used in passive constructions. The children were wrested out of their homes by Child Protective Services. The rebels have sworn to wrest power out of the hands of the autocrats ruling the country.
3. To cause someone to be suddenly removed from some state or condition. Often used in passive constructions. The loud noise wrested me out of my slumber. She was wrested out of her daydream by the school bell.
4. To obtain or extract something, such as information, from someone or something, especially after much difficulty or persistence. We were finally able to wrest some answers out of the spy we were interrogating. I've been going to counseling in an effort to wrest some meaning out of this tragic situation.
See also: of, out, wrest

wrest off

To take someone or something away from someone or something by pulling or prying in a violent, wrenching manner. A noun or pronoun can be used between "wrest" and "off." He walked over to the headstone and wrested off the medallion that had been embedded in the marble. The man has been hailed as a hero for wresting the gun off of the shooter before anyone was harmed. The officers wrested my son off me before I had the chance to run.
See also: off, wrest

wrest out

1. To remove or take away something by pulling or prying in a violent, wresting manner. A noun or pronoun can be used between "wrest" and "out." He wrested the gun out of the attacker's hands. He reached into the machine and wrested out the cables supplying power to the motherboard.
2. To obtain or extract something, such as information, from someone or something, especially after much difficulty or persistence. A noun or pronoun can be used between "wrest" and "out." We were finally able to wrest some answers out of the spy we were interrogating. I've never been able to wrest any meaning out of abstract paintings—they always look just like splatters of paint to me. I wrested out a confession from Tommy after threatening to take his video games away for a year.
See also: out, wrest

wrest someone or something (away) from someone or something

to struggle to get someone or something from the grip of someone or something. The kidnappers wrested the baby from his mother and ran away with him. The policeman wrested the gun away from Lefty.
See also: wrest

wrest something off (of) something

 and wrest something off
to struggle to get something off something. (Of is usually retained before pronouns.) Somehow he wrested the hubcap off the wheel. He wrested off the hubcap.
See also: off, wrest

wrest from

v.
1. To obtain something from someone or something by pulling with violent twisting movements: I wrested the hammer from his fist.
2. To usurp or obtain possession of something forcefully from someone or something: The duke wrested power from the monarchy.
3. To extract something from someone or something by or as if by force, twisting, or persistent effort: In class I struggled to wrest the meaning from an obscure poem.
See also: wrest

wrest off

v.
To obtain or remove something from someone or something by pulling with violent twisting movements: The thief wrested off the hood ornament from the car. I wrested the car keys off him.
See also: off, wrest

wrest out

v.
1. To obtain something from someone or something by pulling with violent twisting movements: The farmer dug into the soil and wrested out a fresh turnip. The bullies wrested the book out of the little boy's hands and ran off with it.
2. To extract something from someone or something by or as if by force, twisting, or persistent effort: I was finally able to wrest out some meaning from the jumbled essay. The police wrested a confession out of the suspect.
3. To escape from something by pulling with violent twisting movements: The cat wrested out of my arms and jumped to the floor.
See also: out, wrest
References in periodicals archive ?
From the heady days of the revolution onward, villagers succeeded in wresting control over parish affairs by placing them directly under communal control.
Wresting American Express back from Chiat/Day just 11 months after O&M was fired in 1991 was a crowning achievment, as was successfully luring back other key lost clients, including Maxwell House, Unilever, and Shell Oil.
They have jettisoned "Clause Four" of the party constitution, which had always committed Labour to the goal of wresting control of the means of production from the private sector.
Contrary to popular misconceptions, Perl said he is achieving rentals of $38 a foot, just two doors down from a building the city is wresting from anarchist squatters.
Historically we have been a nation at war with nature, wresting food, fiber, and minerals from her tenacious grasp.
Lim said BN was confident of wresting Penang back by winning all 15 seats for Umno, one for MIC, two for MCA and three for Gerakan.
MANILA -- Government prosecutors accused lawyer Jessica Lucila "Gigi" Reyes, former chief of staff of Senator Juan Ponce Enrile, of having "after office attacks" as a means of wresting control from the Sandiganbayan on where she will be detained.
On Sunday, personnel of the CRPF, BSF and West Bengal police started moving from Lalgarh to Ramgarh in an operation aimed at sanitising the main road and other connecting routes and wresting control of the 17 villages.
"However, within five-and-a half-years, the Irish had succeeded in wresting control of most of their country from one of the most powerful empires in the world."