- 1Grasp or seize (something) tightly or eagerly: he stood clutching a microphone [no object]: • figurative Mrs. Longhill clutched at the ideaMore example sentences
- She froze, one hand gripping the doorknob and the other clutching the shawl tightly to her chest.
- She yelled back, tightly clutching the seatbelt running diagonally down her chest.
- His wife, a petite blonde, stands beside him clutching a glass of wine and smiling stiffly.
- 1.1 (also British clutch up) Become nervous and panicked: doctors could clutch up and lose control as easily as anyoneMore example sentences
- The Guard clutched up in the final seconds, nailing two free throws and giving him 25 points in the game, to secure a victory.
- It's like clutching up, when you first realize you're having a flashback, instead of trying to relax.
- My throat clutched up, and I could feel the tears.
nounBack to top
- 1A tight grasp or an act of grasping something: she made a clutch at his bodyMore example sentences
- She dropped her sword because his clutch was so tight, she nearly passed out.
- In one desperate clutch at a straw, the company announced that it would start trading in weather!
- You quickly tighten the clutch, as tight as you dare, then hang on!
- 1.1 (someone's clutches) A person’s power or control, especially when perceived as cruel or inescapable: she escaped the clutches of her temperamental familyMore example sentences
- Fear gripped her in icy clutches despite the heat, and then, strangely, it ran down her skin in cold waves like snowmelt down a majestic mountain.
- She moves out, leaving him in the clutches of the two strangers.
- The cold clutches of reality gripped her stomach with a death hold as she realized… It was all real.
- 2North American A slim, flat handbag without handles or a strap.More example sentences
- Put the accent on femininity with this classy suede-and-lace clutch.
- This vintage-inspired clutch adds a pop of color and excitement to any look.
- I can totally picture someone wearing a dress for a nice night out holding this clutch.
- 3A mechanism for connecting and disconnecting a vehicle engine from its transmission system.More example sentences
- Conventional automatic transmission systems do not have a clutch between the engine and the gearbox.
- Our spiral retaining rings are used for clutches, transmissions and many other automotive components.
- The clutch between the engine and traction motor is engaged, and electric motor used for bursts of acceleration.
- 3.1The pedal operating a vehicle’s clutch.More example sentences
- ‘A lot of people use the clutch and the brake pedal in the wrong order,’ said Smyth.
- I slowly pushed the gas pedal downward and lifted my left foot off the clutch.
- There's not much space around the pedals which means if you have large feet like me, clutch and brake operation can be awkward.
adjectiveUS • informal Back to top
- 1(In sport) denoting or occurring in a critical situation in which the outcome of a game or competition is at stake: they both are hard-nosed players who seem to thrive in clutch situationsMore example sentences
- He's pitched some amazingly clutch games in his career and he's as good a bet as the Yanks have going for them right now.
- He likes being in clutch situations, always the mark of a great player.
- Both are making better decisions in clutch situations.
- 1.1(Of a player or action) achieving or characterized by success at a critical moment in a game or competition: a clutch quarterback clutch free-throw shootingMore example sentences
- With a series of gutsy chips and clutch putts, Guan notched four birdies and carded a 1-over-par 73.
- Earlier in his season Valbuena had some clutch hits in key situations.
- His defense is top tier and he is hitting .286 for the last two weeks with numerous timely clutch hits.
clutch at straws
- see straw.
in the clutch
- US • informal At a critical moment: why are some athletes able to perform in the clutch while others choke?More example sentences
- Thank you for coming through in the clutch.
- I insisted that Barrett belonged on the All-Star team, citing his batting average 'in the clutch' and stellar fielding percentage.
- Bryan came through in the clutch when it was needed.
Middle English (in the sense 'bend, crook'): variant of obsolete clitch 'close the hand', from Old English clyccan 'crook, clench', of Germanic origin.
- 1A group of eggs fertilized at the same time, typically laid in a single session and (in birds) incubated together.More example sentences
- We collected clutches, incubated the eggs, and took blood samples from hatching young.
- The female incubates her large clutch, and both parents tend the hatchlings.
- The female incubates the clutch of eggs, which can vary from 4 to 6, but usually consists of 5 eggs.
- 1.1A brood of chicks.More example sentences
- Almost 10,000 clutches of chicks were purchased for families in Central America.
- For example, a donation buys a clutch of chicks for a family in Central America, which will give that family an ongoing supply of eggs, meat and additional income.
- The proceeds amounted to 115 which bought a clutch of chicks, a goat and a Family Survival Kit.
- 1.2A small group of people or things: a clutch of young girls on roller skatesMore example sentences
group, collection; raft, armful• informal load, bunch, ton
- I was surrounded by a clutch of girls and young men - my sisters and brothers.
- The students have picked up a clutch of medals at the prestigious Chelsea Flower Show.
- Today, thanks to the professional services offered by a clutch of landscape artists, gardening has assumed an altogether different dimension.
early 18th century: probably a southern variant of northern English dialect cletch, related to Middle English cleck 'to hatch', from Old Norse klekja.