• Verb
  • to take and hold (something) with your fingers, hands, etc.
    1. I grasped the end of the rope and pulled as hard as I could.
    2. I grasped the rope by its end.
    3. His arthritis is so bad he can barely grasp a pencil.
    4. We need to grasp [=seize] this opportunity while we can.
  • to understand (something that is complicated or difficult)
    1. They failed to grasp [=comprehend] the importance of talking to their children about the dangers of taking drugs.
    2. They don't (fully) grasp the implications of these changes.
  • to try to take or get (something) in an eager or desperate way
    1. They were ready to grasp at any possible solution.
    2. He grasped at the opportunity to speak with her.
  • to try in a desperate or awkward way to get (something)
    1. His sudden decision to quit the race has left his supporters grasping for explanations.
    2. grasping for attention
  • Noun
  • a usually strong hold
    1. I kept a firm grasp on the rope. [=I held the rope firmly with my hand]
    2. The ball slipped/fell from her grasp. [=she dropped the ball]
  • an understanding of something
    1. She has a good/firm/thorough grasp of mathematics. [=she understands mathematics well]
    2. The author shows a weak/feeble/shaky grasp of military strategy.
    3. His motives are beyond my grasp. [=I can't understand his motives]
    4. We're still trying to get a grasp on [=to gain a good understanding of] the situation.
  • the distance that can be reached by your arms and hands
    1. The books on the top shelf are just beyond my grasp.
    2. She moved the toy to within the baby's grasp.
    3. He tried to grab the rolling ball, but it eluded his grasp. [=he could not reach it]
  • the ability to get or find something
    1. Success is almost within our grasp. [=we are very close to success]
    2. She felt the solution was within her grasp.
  • power or control
    1. The land was in the grasp [=grip] of a tyrant.
    2. He had the country in his grasp.