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[uhn-tang-guh l] /ʌnˈtæŋ gəl/
verb (used with object), untangled, untangling.
to bring out of a tangled state; disentangle; unsnarl.
to straighten out or clear up (anything confused or perplexing).
Origin of untangle
1540-50; un-2 + tangle1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for untangle
  • They found the protein could untangle its arms at one end to loosen its grip on a potentially toxic molecule of iron and sulfur.
  • Reflexivity enables researchers to untangle personal and theoretical commitments and scrutinize ethics and epistemology.
  • He will try to untangle matted fur by chewing on the fur mat.
  • Don't panic or thrash around if entangled, slowly remove the kelp or have your buddy gently untangle it for you.
  • The crew must work quickly to get the nets in and untangle the sturgeon from the twisted netting.
  • As they untangle a fish, the crew ties a rope around its tail and throws it back in the water.
British Dictionary definitions for untangle


verb (transitive)
to free from a tangled condition
to free from perplexity or confusion
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 untangle

1540s, from un- (2) + tangle. Related: Untangled; untangling.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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