compress

verb
com·​press | \ kəm-ˈpres How to pronounce compress (audio) \
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 How to pronounce compress (audio) \

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 86th Texas Legislature’s passage of House Bill 3 required school districts to compress their tax rates. Melanie Feuk, Houston Chronicle, "Klein ISD adopts 2020-2021 budget proposing a 2% pay increase," 25 June 2020 The pandemic is on track to compress five years of online share gains into one: E-commerce will count for 23% of apparel spending in Europe this year, up from 18% in 2019, according to Bernstein analyst Aneesha Sherman. Carol Ryan, WSJ, "A Contrarian Retailer’s Challenge to Tech-Obsessed Investors," 25 June 2020 The opera company will drop one production and compress the remaining four between March 5 and May 2, plus a fundraising gala on May 10. Tim Diovanni, Dallas News, "Dallas Opera, Cliburn delay season starts into 2021," 5 June 2020 The race for a vaccine is compressing years into months. Remy Tumin, New York Times, "Reopening, Vaccine, Spring Gardens: Your Weekend Briefing," 3 May 2020 Her poems, compressed into singular sentences, steer the reader through a rich and remarkable art history and renowned sights and scenes. oregonlive, "Celebrate World Poetry Day with these 6 Oregon-rooted collections," 19 Mar. 2020 For some individuals in quarantine, time stretches but also compresses. Jackie Rocheleau, Scientific American, "A Monday Is a Tuesday Is a Sunday as COVID-19 Disrupts Internal Clocks," 27 May 2020 In those two bear markets, valuations typically compressed 30% to 50%, falling to 2.4x sales or 7.5x Ebitda. Kristine Owram, Bloomberg.com, "Cash Dwindles, ‘Extinction-Level Event’ Looms: Cannabis Weekly," 14 Apr. 2020 In periods with no fresh snow, or light snowfalls, the snow base will compress and the surface will freeze into an ice layer. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "Get a fresh New Year start at snowy mountain lookout," 3 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Made from a fabric dubbed Vapor that delivers a second-skin feel, the leggings compress and lift your body simultaneously. Courtney Thompson, CNN Underscored, "The comfiest leggings you can essentially live in," 25 June 2020 As the air springs on the outside of the SUV compress in a corner, E-ABC provides more pressure to each damper's lower chamber, lifting the body. Jason Fenske, Car and Driver, "How Mercedes Helps Your SUV Handle like a Car," 23 May 2020 The kit includes antiseptic towelettes, alcohol wipes, antibiotic ointment packets, a cold compress, 50 adhesive bandages, a tape roll, butterfly closures, finger splints, gauze pads and gloves. oregonlive, "100-piece first aid kit for under $10 to stay prepared at home during coronavirus isolation," 20 Apr. 2020 Massaging your breast and applying warm compresses while nursing or pumping may also help the duct clear and ease discomfort. Amy Kiefer, New York Times, "How to Feed a Combination of Breast Milk and Formula," 16 Apr. 2020 Her mother put compresses of cold water and vinegar on her forehead to cool the fever and soothe the headaches. oregonlive, "Oregonians with coronavirus: ‘I was healthy and exercised ... And I got sick’," 8 Apr. 2020 So other passengers began handing her their clothes to make cold compresses, some of them stripping down to their bras and underpants. Nick Perry, Twin Cities, "Rescuer describes horror of New Zealand’s silent eruption; 16 believed killed," 14 Dec. 2019 Once the acid is off your face, your dermatologist will likely apply a cool compress to soothe your skin. Farwa Shah, SELF, "10 Things You Should Know Before Getting a Glycolic Acid Peel," 3 Dec. 2019 For milder cases, cool compresses, gentle and soothing skin protectants like aloe vera, and pain relievers can help reduce the discomfort of a sunburn, Dr. Tiernan says. Sara Coughlin, SELF, "8 Reasons Why Your Skin Is Peeling—and How to Deal," 11 Feb. 2020

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

Time Traveler for compress

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for compress

Last Updated

29 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Compress.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/compress. Accessed 4 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for compress

compress

verb
How to pronounce compress (audio)

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
How to pronounce compress (audio)

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 How to pronounce compress (audio) \
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 How to pronounce compress (audio) \

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)
com·​press | \ kəm-ˈpres How to pronounce compress (audio) \

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 How to pronounce compress (audio) \

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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