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[hand-hohld] /ˈhændˌhoʊld/
a grip with the hand or hands.
something to grip or take hold of, as a support or handle.
Origin of handhold
1635-45; hand + hold1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for handhold
Historical Examples
  • "Good man," grinned a sooty-faced officer, clinging to a handhold.

  • The reaction of the motion brought him slowly but surely to a handhold in the wall.

    Islands of Space John W Campbell
  • He swung himself silently over the brink and hung by a handhold on the rock.

    The Snow-Burner Henry Oyen
  • I leaned as far back as I could, and felt about for a handhold.

    True Tales of Mountain Adventures Mrs. Aubrey Le Blond
  • There was a handhold of iron, a sort of large iron staple, in the bricks in front of them.

    The Red House Mystery A. A. Milne
  • He clutched the handhold and rolled backward, as he had seen the men do.

    The Small World of M-75 Ed M. Clinton, Jr.
  • It did not serve to recall Molly in all her glory, to reach hither and yon for a handhold to pull him out of this morass.

    The Drums Of Jeopardy Harold MacGrath
  • Then he had to snatch for a handhold as the spider-machine lunged into a dead run.

    World of the Drone Robert Abernathy
  • The walls of the fissure are of smooth limestone, offering neither foothold nor handhold.

  • He twisted, grabbed for a handhold and missed and shot up towards the surface.

    The Thirst Quenchers Rick Raphael
British Dictionary definitions for handhold


an object, crevice, etc, that can be used as a grip or support, as in climbing
a grip or secure hold with the hand or hands
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for handhold

1640s, from hand (n.) + hold (n.1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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