seize up

phrasal verb

seized up; seizing up; seizes up
: to stop working because the moving parts can no longer move
The engine/brakes suddenly seized up.
sometimes used figuratively
Her brain seized up when she tried to answer the question.

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web For many years, Palmen performed nearly all vehicle maintenance by himself, including starting each vehicle regularly to ensure the engines did not seize up, according to the auction house. Sarah Kuta, Smithsonian Magazine, 18 Apr. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'seize up.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Dictionary Entries Near seize up

Cite this Entry

“Seize up.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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