One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
1To clasp or hold tightly with one's hand or in one's arms, etc., for a second or subsequent time.
2no object To clasp or embrace (a person) for a second or subsequent time. Occasionally without object. Also in extended use.
3no object To interlace (one's fingers) again; to join or entwine (one's hands or arms) together tightly again. Also without object (of a person's hands): to rejoin tightly, typically with the fingers interlaced.
4with object To reclose the clasp of (a purse, jewellery, etc.); to refasten.
Late 18th century; earliest use found in Henry Brooke (c1703–1783), writer and playwright. From re- + clasp.
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