tr.v. wrung (rŭng), wring·ing, wrings
a. To twist, squeeze, or compress, especially so as to extract liquid. Often used with out: wring out a wet towel.
b. To extract (liquid) by twisting or compressing. Often used with out: wrung the water out of my bathing suit.
2. To wrench or twist forcibly or painfully: wring the neck of a chicken.
a. To clasp and twist or squeeze (one's hands), as in distress.
b. To clasp firmly and shake (another's hand), as in congratulation.
4. To cause distress to; affect with painful emotion: a tale that wrings the heart.
5. To obtain or extract by applying force or pressure: wrung the truth out of the recalcitrant witness.
The act or an instance of wringing.
[Middle English wringen, from Old English wringan; see wer-2 in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.