Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “grasp the nettle”

grasp the nettle

UK
C2 to force yourself to be brave and do something that is difficult or unpleasant: You've been putting off making that phone call for days - I think it's about time you grasped the nettle!Brave and courageousCoping and not copingDealing with things or peopleTolerating and enduring
(Definition of grasp the nettle from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

Browse related topics

You are looking at an entry to do with Brave and courageous, but you might be interested in these topics from the Fear and danger topic area:

Translations of “grasp the nettle”

Word of the Day

generous

willing to give money, help, kindness, etc., especially more than is usual or expected

Word of the Day

Blog

Read our blog about how the English language behaves.

Learn More

New Words

Find words and meanings that have just started to be used in English, and let us know what you think of them.

Learn More