grasp - definition in the British English Dictionary & Thesaurus - Cambridge Dictionaries Online (US)

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English definition of “grasp”

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grasp

verb [T] uk   /ɡrɑːsp/  us   /ɡræsp/

grasp verb [T] (TAKE)

C1 to quickly take something in your hand(s) and hold it firmly: Rosie suddenly grasped my hand. If you grasp an opportunity, you take it eagerly: We must grasp every opportunity to strengthen economic ties with other countries.
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grasp verb [T] (UNDERSTAND)

C1 to understand something, especially something difficult: I think I managed to grasp the main points of the lecture. The government has acknowledged that homelessness is a problem but it has failed to grasp the scale of the problem.
Phrasal verbs

grasp

noun uk   /ɡrɑːsp/  us   /ɡræsp/

grasp noun (HOLD)

C2 [S] the act of holding onto someone or something: He shook my hand with a very firm grasp.C2 [U] the ability to get, achieve, or keep something: The presidency at last looked within her grasp (= it looked possible that she might become president). Why is success always beyond my grasp (= impossible to get)? The gold medal slipped from his grasp (= he was unable to get it) in the last moments of the race. I sometimes think that he's losing his grasp on reality (= his ability to judge what is real and what is not).

grasp noun (UNDERSTANDING)

(Definition of grasp from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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