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(ˈgɔnt lɪt, ˈgɑnt-)

1. a mailed glove worn with a suit of armor to protect the hand.
2. a glove with an extended cuff.
3. the cuff itself.
1. take up the gauntlet, to accept a challenge to fight.
2. throw down the gauntlet, to challenge someone to fight.
[1375–1425; late Middle English gantelet < Middle French, diminutive of gant glove < Germanic *want-; compare Old Norse vǫttr]
gaunt′let•ed, adj.


(ˈgɔnt lɪt, ˈgɑnt-)

1. a former punishment, chiefly military, in which the offender was made to run between two rows of men who struck at him with switches or weapons as he passed.
2. the two rows of men administering this punishment.
3. an attack from two or all sides.
4. a severe test; ordeal.
run the gauntlet, to suffer severe criticism or tribulation.
Also, gantlet (for defs. 1, 2, 4).
[1670–80; alter. of gantlope]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
Some said, he ought to be tied neck and heels; others that he deserved to run the gantlope; and the serjeant shook his cane at him, and wished he had him under his command, swearing heartily he would make an example of him.
The word came into English at the time of the Thirty Years ' War as gantlope, meaning the passage between two files of soldiers, and is the Swedish gata, " way; passage " plus lopp (connected with English leap ), " course.