Definition of wring in English:


Line breaks: wring
Pronunciation: /rɪŋ

verb (past and past participle wrung /rʌŋ/)

[with object]
  • 1Squeeze and twist (something) to force liquid from it: she wrung the cloth out in the sink
    More example sentences
    • Gently wipe away all traces of the cleanser with a face washer wrung out in tepid water, rinsing at least twice more in warm water.
    • Victoria wrung out the washcloth into the basin and hung it on its peg.
    • We would walk off after each scene; literally wringing our shirts dry of sweat.
    twist, squeeze, screw, scrunch, knead, press, mangle; dry, squeeze dry, screw the water out of
  • 1.1 [with object and adverbial] Extract (liquid) by squeezing and twisting something: I wrung out the excess water
    More example sentences
    • Viney hypothesizes that as the raw liquid silk squeezes through the duct, water is wrung out of the protein and calcium is added.
    • It was the sort of rain that resembled water being wrung out of a dishcloth - droplets the size of marbles and musty-smelling to boot.
    • Not only could fat be wrung out of the bread, there were dark foreign objects within its matrix, which upon further investigation turned out to be little globules of maple syrup.
  • 1.2Squeeze (someone’s hand) tightly, especially with sincere emotion: he fervently wrung Rose’s hand
    More example sentences
    • Her hands, which had formerly been clasped in her lap, were now being wrung nervously, her fingers gripping and squeezing those of the other hand and vice-versa.
    • Ice let go of his hand to wring hers rather nervously,
  • 1.3 [with object and adverbial] Obtain (something) with difficulty or effort: few concessions were wrung from the government
    More example sentences
    • For those readers who are accustomed to more detailed explications, the chapters will read less as case studies and more as efforts to wring from Freud's original texts some interpretive potential.
    • He actually bends over the steering wheel as if to wring an extra couple of miles out of the car.
    • Guiseley wrung one final effort out of Henry before the final whistle and all in all a draw was a fair result.
    extract, elicit, force, coerce, exact, extort, wrest, wrench, screw, squeeze, milk
    informal bleed
  • 2Break (an animal’s neck) by twisting it forcibly: the chicken shrieked as one of the women wrung its neck humorous I’ll wring her neck when I lay hands on her
    More example sentences
    • It's operated by a centrifugal clutch and gives the buggy a far better top speed than a single geared model, and gives the engine a break from not wringing its own neck, trying to hit top speed with only one gear.
    • Back at the peg, its neck will be wrung to kill it.
    • Tobie shrieked, almost wringing her best friend's neck.


[in singular] Back to top  
  • An act of squeezing or twisting something.
    More example sentences
    • I rinse my brush in hot water, warm water and then give it a slight "wring".
    • Do you go steady with the brush for very long before you give it a wring?
    • Most of all I like that you can roll it up in wet clothing, give it a wring, and it removes maybe 50% of the water before hanging the clothes to dry.


wring one's hands

Clasp and twist one’s hands together as a gesture of great distress, especially when one is powerless to change the situation: she was wringing her hands in agitation there was little they could do about it except wring their hands
More example sentences
  • This needs real leadership from the international community to avoid a situation where everyone's just wringing their hands and watching the situation get worse and worse.
  • Still, I'm perfectly willing to spend the first few days of the month wringing my hands over the situation.
  • I wrung my hands together and buried my face into my hands.


Old English wringan (verb), of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch wringen, also to wrong.

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