length·​en | \ ˈleŋ(k)-thən How to pronounce lengthen (audio) , ˈlen(t)- \
lengthened; lengthening\ ˈleŋ(k)th-​niŋ How to pronounce lengthen (audio) , ˈlen(t)th-​ ; ˈleŋ(k)-​thə-​ , ˈlen(t)-​ \

Definition of lengthen

transitive verb

: to make longer

intransitive verb

: to grow longer

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Other Words from lengthen

lengthener \ ˈleŋ(k)th-​nər How to pronounce lengthen (audio) , ˈlen(t)th-​ ; ˈleŋ(k)-​thə-​ , ˈlen(t)-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for lengthen

extend, lengthen, prolong, protract mean to draw out or add to so as to increase in length. extend and lengthen imply a drawing out in space or time but extend may also imply increase in width, scope, area, or range. extend a vacation extend welfare services lengthen a skirt lengthen the workweek prolong suggests chiefly increase in duration especially beyond usual limits. prolonged illness protract adds to prolong implications of needlessness, vexation, or indefiniteness. protracted litigation

Examples of lengthen in a Sentence

The days lengthened with the approach of spring. Proper care will lengthen the life of the engine. lengthen a pair of trousers
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Recent Examples on the Web The agency wants to formalize scooters for disabled riders, raise fees for companies and lengthen the duration of permits. Mallory Moench, SFChronicle.com, "S.F. to add 500 more scooters while seeking changes to permit program," 14 Jan. 2021 Before hearing from the witnesses, the committee is scheduled to meet at 9 a.m. ET to debate Barrett's nomination — a process that might be contentious and could potentially include various procedural motions and that could lengthen the process. Christal Hayes, USA TODAY, "Last day of Amy Coney Barrett Supreme Court hearings to feature debate, character witnesses," 15 Oct. 2020 At that point, Blinken said the administration would look to strengthen and lengthen the terms of the accord. Matthew Lee, Anchorage Daily News, "Biden pauses Trump policies as Blinken takes diplomatic helm," 28 Jan. 2021 The waitlist also will likely lengthen if Alabama opens the vaccine up to those 65 years old and older, as recently recommended by federal officials. al, "Alabama teachers may have to wait longer for COVID-19 vaccine," 15 Jan. 2021 In your last days, millions more are going hungry, and unhoused, as jobs evaporate and bread lines lengthen. Yvonne Abraham, BostonGlobe.com, "Beat it, 2020. You’ve been truly awful.," 30 Dec. 2020 Arthur Oliver found Shobal Barksdale for 61-yard touchdown to lengthen to the lead to 35-7 after halftime. Dashone Dunomes, NOLA.com, "Tre Magnello returns two kickoffs for touchdowns in East Jefferson's win over Riverdale," 7 Oct. 2020 Lash primer can help lengthen and separate eyelashes to create the ideal starting point for your mascara. Katie Berohn, Good Housekeeping, "Everything You Need to Know About Makeup Primer and How to Apply It Flawlessly," 11 Nov. 2020 Today might feature the smallest day length of the year, but the days will begin to lengthen starting tomorrow. Leigh Morgan, al, "Winter solstice 2020: It’s the shortest day of the year," 21 Dec. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lengthen.' 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 lengthen

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Time Traveler for lengthen

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for lengthen

Last Updated

2 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Lengthen.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/lengthen. Accessed 5 Mar. 2021.

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More Definitions for lengthen



English Language Learners Definition of lengthen

: to become longer
: to make (something) longer


length·​en | \ ˈleŋ-thən How to pronounce lengthen (audio) \
lengthened; lengthening

Kids Definition of lengthen

: to make or become longer lengthen a dress

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