compress

verb
com·​press | \kəm-ˈpres \
compressed; compressing; compresses

Definition of compress 

(Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to press or squeeze together

2 : to reduce in size, quantity, or volume as if by squeezing compress a computer file

compress

noun
com·​press | \ˈkäm-ˌpres \

Definition of compress (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a folded cloth or pad applied so as to press upon a body part

2 : a machine for compressing

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Choose the Right Synonym for compress

Verb

contract, shrink, condense, compress, constrict, deflate mean to decrease in bulk or volume. contract applies to a drawing together of surfaces or particles or a reduction of area or length. caused her muscles to contract shrink implies a contracting or a loss of material and stresses a falling short of original dimensions. the sweater will shrink when washed condense implies a reducing of something homogeneous to greater compactness without significant loss of content. condense the essay into a paragraph compress implies a pressing into a small compass and definite shape usually against resistance. compressed cotton into bales constrict implies a tightening that reduces diameter. the throat is constricted by a tight collar deflate implies a contracting by reducing the internal pressure of contained air or gas. deflate the balloon

Examples of compress in a Sentence

Verb

compress the air in a closed chamber Her lips compressed into a frown. a material that compresses easily This type of file compresses easily.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The surgery will aim to fix whatever’s compressing your sciatic nerve and causing your unpleasant symptoms. Korin Miller, SELF, "This Is the Number One Sign You Have Sciatica," 29 Aug. 2018 On April 22, the GRU team began compressing the data into archive files for exfiltration. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "How they did it (and will likely try again): GRU hackers vs. US elections," 27 July 2018 The site isn’t actually hosted anywhere — the entirety of the webpage exists as a URL compressed using what’s known as the Lempel–Ziv–Markov chain algorithm. Nick Statt, The Verge, "This amazing new web tool lets you create microsites that exist solely as URLs," 5 July 2018 The material is exceptionally compressing and the seams on the front thighs make these leggings feel unique and a little fancier. Emily Reed, Outside Online, "The Best Leggings of 2018," 5 July 2018 Astrophysicists have been working to pin down exactly when gases compressed to spark nuclear fusion for the first time, producing light and heat and igniting stars. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "The First Stars May Have Formed Just 250 Million Years After the Big Bang," 17 May 2018 The all-sports edition was compressed into four weeks, which meant double eliminations each week. Phil Rosenthal, chicagotribune.com, "Adam Rippon wins all-athlete edition of 'Dancing with the Stars'," 22 May 2018 At the poles, older layers become buried and compressed into ice, turning these spaces into bubbles of past air, as researchers Caitlin Keating-Bitonti and Lucy Chang write in Smithsonian.com. Rachel E. Gross, Smithsonian, "Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Earth’s Past Climates," 16 Apr. 2018 Concerns that the Federal Reserve’s boost in short-term rates will slow the economy have compressed the difference between two-year and 10-year Treasury note yields. Phillip Molnar, sandiegouniontribune.com, "Is a flattening yield curve a sign of a coming recession?," 6 July 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Stewart said pain should go away within two or three days and recommends taking aspirin or ibuprofen and applying ice and a warm compress to alleviate pain and inflammation. Erica Sweeney, Teen Vogue, "Why Do Some Vaccines Hurt More Than Others?," 24 Oct. 2018 Add to a cold compress Dehydration sucks—and one of the first signs is a headache. Allison Young, Good Housekeeping, "8 Best Essential Oils For Headaches And How To Use Them," 30 Oct. 2017 Immediately immerse the burn in cool tap water or apply cold, wet compresses. Sarah Brookbank, Cincinnati.com, "Fourth of July: What to do if you get burned by a firework," 4 July 2018 Bag of frozen peas, or another cold compress will absorb the heat and reduce swelling. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "Can shaving cream take sting out of sunburn? One mom says yes," 29 June 2018 Or use clean hands and apply a warm compress to help draw the pimple out. Blake Bakkila, Health.com, "This 20-Minute Pimple Popping Video Will Give You Nightmares," 18 June 2018 What to do: Wash the bite with soap and water and use cool compresses to alleviate the numbness and tingling. Kelsey Mo, azcentral, "Top 5 calls to Poison Control and what the hotline advises you should do," 18 June 2018 If the sore is below the belt: Just like with cold sores, cool compresses are your friend. Hannah Orenstein, Seventeen, ""I Have a Cold Sore. Does That Mean I Have Herpes?"," 7 Oct. 2016 There was a lot of commentary back in the United States on some other channels that maybe because this schedule is getting compress, that the deal was falling through. Fox News, "Conway: Denuclearization of North Korea benefits the world," 12 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'compress.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of compress

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1599, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for compress

Verb

Middle English, from Late Latin compressare to press hard, frequentative of Latin comprimere to compress, from com- + premere to press — more at press

Noun

Middle French compresse, from compresser to compress, from Late Latin compressare

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Learn More about compress

Statistics for compress

Last Updated

17 Nov 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for compress

The first known use of compress was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for compress

compress

verb

English Language Learners Definition of compress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to press or squeeze (something) so that it is smaller or fills less space

: to make (something) shorter or smaller

computers : to reduce the size of (a computer file) by using special software

compress

noun

English Language Learners Definition of compress (Entry 2 of 2)

: a folded cloth that is pressed against a part of the body to reduce pain or stop bleeding from an injury

compress

verb
com·​press | \kəm-ˈpres \
compressed; compressing

Kids Definition of compress

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to press or squeeze together compressing his lips

2 : to reduce in size, quantity, or volume by or as if by pressure The pump is for compressing air.

compress

noun
com·​press | \ˈkäm-ˌpres \

Kids Definition of compress (Entry 2 of 2)

: a pad (as of folded cloth) applied firmly to a part of the body (as to stop bleeding)

compress

transitive verb
com·​press | \kəm-ˈpres \

Medical Definition of compress 

(Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to press or squeeze together a ligament in the wrist was compressing a nerve

2 : to reduce in size or volume as if by squeezing compress air

compress

noun
com·​press | \ˈkäm-ˌpres \

Medical Definition of compress (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a covering consisting usually of a folded cloth that is applied and held firmly by the aid of a bandage over a wound dressing to prevent oozing

2 : a folded wet or dry cloth applied firmly to a part (as to allay inflammation)

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Comments on compress

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