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2 definitions found
 for grapnel
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Grapnel \Grap"nel\, n. [OE. grapenel, dim. fr. F. grappin the
     grapple of a ship; of German origin. See Grape.] (Naut.)
     A small anchor, with four or five flukes or claws, used to
     hold boats or small vessels; hence, any instrument designed
     to grapple or hold; a grappling iron; a grab; -- written also
     grapline, and crapnel.
     [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

      n 1: a tool consisting of several hooks for grasping and
           holding; often thrown with a rope [syn: grapnel,
           grapple, grappler, grappling hook, grappling iron]
      2: a light anchor for small boats [syn: grapnel, grapnel

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