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Quick answer
"Empuñar" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to grasp", and "apuñalar" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to stab". Learn more about the difference between "empuñar" and "apuñalar" below.
empuñar(
ehm
-
poo
-
nyahr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to grip)
a. to grasp
El profesor me enseñó a empuñar correctamente el palo de golf.The teacher taught me how to grasp the golf club correctly.
b. to take up (weaponry)
Yo solo empuñaría una pistola si tuviera que defender a mi familia.I would only take up a gun if I had to defend my family.
2. (to close) (Andes)
Regionalism used in Nicaragua
(Nicaragua)
a. to clench
Nicolás empuñó las manos pero no se atrevió a lanzarme un puñetazo.Nicolas clenched his fists but he didn't dare to punch me.
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apuñalar(
ah
-
poo
-
nyah
-
lahr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to injure with a knife)
a. to stab
Un hombre fue detenido por intentar apuñalar a aficionados del equipo contrario.A man was arrested for trying to stab fans from the opposing team.
b. to knife
El hombre encapuchado apuñaló a la víctima por la espalda.The hooded man knifed his victim in the back.
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