Definition of monkey wrench in English:

monkey wrench

Line breaks: mon¦key wrench


  • An adjustable spanner with large jaws which has its adjusting screw located in the jaw that is fixed.
    More example sentences
    • Consider a multi-wrench for those all-purpose jobs, but also add a pipe wrench, a spud wrench, strap and chain wrench, and a monkey wrench.
    • They taught me how to work the wrench, the monkey wrench, so I kind of had to do a bit of training, to be honest with you.
    • Last, but not least, what tool kit is not complete without a monkey wrench.


Back to top  
  • (monkey-wrench) [with object] informal Sabotage (something), especially as a form of protest: they will spike trees and monkeywrench any attempts to log in wilderness areas (as noun monkey-wrenching) the five defendants received jail sentences for monkey-wrenching
    More example sentences
    • ‘They would have let me out after a month if I'd expressed remorse,’ he says, ‘but we couldn't let them think jailing me would stop monkey-wrenching.’
    • More than a narrative of organizing, demonstrating and monkey-wrenching, it places Earth First!
    • For years, they were seen as the power behind attempted monkey-wrenching to the state's environmental laws and its stiff anti-corporate farming law.


a monkey wrench in the works

see work.



More example sentences
  • What would Abbey's principal monkey-wrencher think of a trail named after him?

More definitions of monkey wrench

Definition of monkey wrench in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day coloratura
Pronunciation: ˌkɒlərəˈtjʊərə
elaborate ornamentation of a vocal melody