muscle

noun, often attributive
mus·​cle | \ ˈmə-səl How to pronounce muscle (audio) \

Definition of muscle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : a body tissue consisting of long cells that contract when stimulated and produce motion
b : an organ that is essentially a mass of muscle tissue attached at either end to a fixed point and that by contracting moves or checks the movement of a body part
2a : muscular strength : brawn
b : effective strength : power political muscle

muscle

verb
muscled; muscling\ ˈmə-​s(ə-​)liŋ How to pronounce muscle (audio) \

Definition of muscle (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to move or force by or as if by muscular effort muscled him out of office

intransitive verb

: to make one's way by brute strength or by force

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Examples of muscle in a Sentence

Noun the muscles of the arm an athlete with bulging muscles He pulled a muscle playing tennis. She has a strained muscle in her back. She started lifting weights to build muscle. She doesn't have the muscle to lift something so heavy. Verb They muscled the heavy boxes onto the truck. They muscled the furniture up the stairs. He muscled through the crowd. They muscled into line behind us.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Dyno said the funding would speed up the development of its vectors, which can be used to target liver, muscle, eye, and central nervous system diseases. Anissa Gardizy — Boston Globe Reprints, STAT, "Dyno raises $100 million to bring artificial intelligence to gene therapy," 9 May 2021 Hoping to optimize his fitness, and ward off muscle atrophy, Bower worked out nearly every day. Star Tribune, "Losing out on their own fishing opener leaves friendship with a void," 8 May 2021 Already, each has had issues with muscle strains or tightness, though none has been on the IL. Susan Slusser, San Francisco Chronicle, "Flashing power, the old guard - Brandon Crawford, Brandon Belt - push Giants past Padres," 8 May 2021 Lycra sport is designed for compression, but is a thinner incarnation than other compression fabrics which allows for significant muscle retention but with better blood flow while giving an overall smoother look. Rebecca Suhrawardi, Forbes, "Fashion Forward Athletic Line Koral Launches Sexy, High-Performance Swim Collection," 7 May 2021 People who tend to faint when getting an injection can use muscle tensing practices to keep their blood pressure up. Tara Law, Time, "'Needle Phobia' May Be Keeping Some From Getting Their COVID-19 Vaccine. Here's How to Cope," 7 May 2021 But President Biden’s decision to put U.S. muscle behind a patent waiver altered the global debate and shifted perceptions of the U.S. in one fell swoop, others say. Noah Robertson, The Christian Science Monitor, "For Biden, vaccine patent waiver is a test of US leadership," 7 May 2021 According to numerous studies, including a 2014 study published in the Journal of Sports Science and Medicine, static stretches of more than 30 seconds have been shown to create an immediate, albeit temporary, decrease in muscle strength and power. Dana Santas, CNN, "Try this couch workout and feel better about binge-watching TV," 7 May 2021 Dyno said the funding would speed up the development of its vectors, which can be used to target liver, muscle, eye, and central nervous system diseases. BostonGlobe.com, "Dyno raises $100 million to bring artificial intelligence to gene therapy," 6 May 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb In a city like Chicago, the partisan political machine can often muscle candidates to victory. Dallas News, "3 election takeaways: Trump king of GOP, Mayor Johnson’s political setback, Dems humbled in CD-6," 3 May 2021 Kerman said his nonprofit that has long fed people in need plans to muscle up the behavioral health skills among their staff to respond to the growing need of their clients. oregonlive, "Old Town: As homeless camping increases, business owners and unhoused cry for more help," 2 May 2021 But despite some periods of disconnect, the Lions were able to muscle out a crucial point on the road. Julia Poe, orlandosentinel.com, "Nani leads Orlando City in draw with Sporting KC," 23 Apr. 2021 The same goes for Sean, who is trying to muscle his way into running the Wallace empire. Roxana Hadadi, Vulture, "Gangs of London Recap: A Peaceful Solution," 11 Apr. 2021 Off a free kick, Meghan Klingenberg floated a curling ball into the box, and Rocky Rodriguez did well to muscle past her defender and nod it inside the near post. oregonlive, "Portland Thorns ring in NWSL Challenge Cup with win over Kansas City in wild 4-red card finish," 10 Apr. 2021 Such a tactic is called the nuclear option because Democrats would be using their majority to muscle through rules changes, enraging Republicans and inviting a future tit-for-tat retaliation. Alan Fram, ajc, "For Senate rules arbiter, minimum wage is latest minefield," 23 Feb. 2021 Such a tactic is called the nuclear option because Democrats would be using their majority to muscle through rules changes, enraging Republicans and inviting a future tit-for-tat retaliation. Alan Fram, Star Tribune, "For Senate rules arbiter, minimum wage is latest minefield," 23 Feb. 2021 Reconciliation is already being used to muscle through Mr. Biden’s $1.9 trillion pandemic relief package, but another budget measure is expected to address infrastructure funding and climate change. New York Times, "Biden Signals He’s Flexible on Immigration Overhaul," 17 Feb. 2021

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

Noun

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

Verb

circa 1819, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for muscle

Noun

Middle English, from Latin musculus, from diminutive of mus mouse — more at mouse entry 1

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Time Traveler for muscle

Time Traveler

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

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Statistics for muscle

Last Updated

12 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Muscle.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/muscle. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for muscle

muscle

noun

English Language Learners Definition of muscle

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a body tissue that can contract and produce movement
: physical strength
: power and influence

muscle

verb

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

: to move (something) by using physical strength and force
: to move forward by using physical force

muscle

noun
mus·​cle | \ ˈmə-səl How to pronounce muscle (audio) \

Kids Definition of muscle

1 : a tissue of the body consisting of long cells that can contract and produce motion
2 : an organ of the body that is a mass of muscle tissue attached at either end (as to bones) so that it can make a body part move
3 : strength of the muscles He doesn't have the muscle to lift that.

muscle

noun, often attributive
mus·​cle | \ ˈməs-əl How to pronounce muscle (audio) \

Medical Definition of muscle

1 : a body tissue consisting of long cells that contract when stimulated and produce motion — see cardiac muscle, smooth muscle, striated muscle
2 : an organ that is essentially a mass of muscle tissue attached at either end to a fixed point and that by contracting moves or checks the movement of a body part — see agonist sense 1, antagonist sense a, synergist sense 2

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