- A device for confining the hands, usually consisting of a set of two metal rings that are fastened about the wrists and joined by a metal chain.
- Something that confines or restrains: “caught in the manacles of their language” (Cynthia Ozick).
transitive verbman·a·cled, man·a·cling, man·a·cles
- To put manacles on (someone); restrain with manacles.
- To restrain the action or progress of: “[She was] manacled by the restrictions of an overbearing father” (Lilian Faderman). See Synonyms at hobble.
Origin of manacleMiddle English, from Old French manicle, from Latin manicula, diminutive of manus, hand; see man-2 in Indo-European roots.
Often used in its plural, and as such a plurale tantum.
(third-person singular simple present manacles, present participle manacling, simple past and past participle manacled)
- To confine with manacles.
From Middle English manicle, from Old French manicle, from Latin manicula.