Dictionary

1tense

noun \ˈten(t)s\

grammar : a form of a verb that is used to show when an action happened

Full Definition of TENSE

1
:  a distinction of form in a verb to express distinctions of time or duration of the action or state it denotes
2
a :  a set of inflectional forms of a verb that express distinctions of time
b :  an inflectional form of a verb expressing a specific time distinction

Examples of TENSE

  1. The sentence will read better if you change the tense of the verb.
  2. You should avoid changing tense in the middle of a paragraph.

Origin of TENSE

Middle English tens time, tense, from Anglo-French, from Latin tempus
First Known Use: 14th century

2tense

adjective

: nervous and not able to relax

: showing or causing nervousness

: not relaxed but hard and tight

tens·ertens·est

Full Definition of TENSE

1
:  stretched tight :  made taut :  rigid <tense muscles>
2
a :  feeling or showing nervous tension <a tense smile>
b :  marked by strain or suspense <a tense thriller>
3
:  produced with the muscles involved in a relatively tense state <the vowels \ē\ and \ü\ in contrast with the vowels \i\ and \u̇\ are tense>
tense·ly adverb
tense·ness noun

Examples of TENSE

  1. She was feeling pretty tense.
  2. Why are you so tense?
  3. We sat quietly for a few tense moments.
  4. It was a tense meeting.
  5. My calf muscles are really tense.

Origin of TENSE

Latin tensus, from past participle of tendere to stretch — more at thin
First Known Use: 1668

Rhymes with TENSE

3tense

verb

: to make (a muscle) hard and tight

: to become nervous or tense

tensedtens·ing

Full Definition of TENSE

transitive verb
:  to make tense
intransitive verb
:  to become tense <tensed up and missed the putt>

Examples of TENSE

  1. She tensed as he walked toward her.
  2. He tensed up and missed the putt.

First Known Use of TENSE

1676

Related to TENSE

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5 ENTRIES FOUND:
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May 23, 2015
debouch Hear it
to emerge or cause to emerge
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