maul

[mawl]
noun
1.
a heavy hammer, as for driving stakes or wedges.
2.
Archaic. a heavy club or mace.
verb (used with object)
3.
to handle or use roughly: The book was badly mauled by its borrowers.
4.
to injure by a rough beating, shoving, or the like; bruise: to be mauled by an angry crowd.
5.
to split with a maul and wedge, as a wooden rail.
Also, mall.


Origin:
1200–50; (noun) Middle English malle < Old French mail mallet, hammer < Latin malleus hammer; (v.) Middle English mallen < Old French maillier, derivative of noun

mauler, noun
unmauled, adjective

mall, maul, maw.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
maul (mɔːl)
 
vb
1.  to handle clumsily; paw
2.  to batter or lacerate
 
n
3.  a heavy two-handed hammer suitable for driving piles, wedges, etc
4.  rugby a loose scrum that forms around a player who is holding the ball and on his feet
 
[C13: from Old French mail, from Latin malleus hammer. See mallet]
 
'mauler
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

maul
mid-13c., meallen "strike with a heavy weapon," from M.E. mealle (mid-13c.) "mace, wooden club, heavy hammer," from O.Fr. mail (see mallet). The meaning "damage seriously, shatter, mangle" is first recorded 1690s. Related: Mauled; mauling.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Easton
Bible Dictionary

Maul definition


an old name for a mallet, the rendering of the Hebrew mephits (Prov. 25:18), properly a war-club.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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Example sentences
Mauled cattle, stained sleepwear and overprotective menfolk.
Several people have been mauled, though deaths so far have been confined to
  cats, rabbits and small dogs.
The honeyguides quickly mauled their foster siblings, shaking brutally and
  striking haphazardly for a few minutes.
Many of these foxes were described as mauled, ripped apart, or fed upon.
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