stretch

verb
\ ˈstrech How to pronounce stretch (audio) \
stretched; stretching; stretches

Definition of stretch

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to extend (one's limbs, one's body, etc.) in a reclining position
2 : to reach out : extend stretched out her arms
3 : to extend in length stretched his neck to see what was going on
4 : to fell with or as if with a blow
5 : to cause the limbs of (a person) to be pulled especially in torture
6 : to draw up (one's body) from a cramped, stooping, or relaxed position
7 : to pull taut canvas stretched on a frame
8a : to enlarge or distend especially by force
b : to extend or expand as if by physical force stretch one's mind with a good book
c : strain stretched his already thin patience
9 : to cause to reach or continue (as from one point to another or across a space) stretch a wire between two posts
10a : to amplify or enlarge beyond natural or proper limits the rules can be stretched this once
b : to expand (as by improvisation) to fulfill a larger function stretching a dollar
11 : to extend (a hit) to an extra base usually by fast or daring running stretch a single into a double

intransitive verb

1a : to become extended in length or breadth or both : spread broad plains stretching to the sea
b : to extend over a continuous period the dynasty stretches back several centuries
2 : to become extended without breaking
3a : to extend one's body or limbs stretched before jogging wanted to stretch out on the sofa
b : to lie down at full length
stretch a point
: to go beyond what is strictly warranted in making a claim or concession
stretch one's legs
1 : to extend the legs
2 : to take a walk in order to relieve stiffness caused by prolonged sitting

stretch

noun

Definition of stretch (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : an exercise of something (such as the understanding or the imagination) beyond ordinary or normal limits their conclusion seemed like a bit of a stretch
b : an extension of the scope or application of something a stretch of language
2 : the extent to which something may be stretched
3a : the act of stretching : the state of being stretched a good stretch for legs
b : the position of a pitcher standing sideways to home plate so as to keep a runner close to a base pitching from the stretch
4a : an extent in length or area an open stretch of road
b : a continuous period of time can write for eight hours at a stretch
5 : a walk to relieve fatigue
6 : a term of imprisonment served a 10-year stretch
7a : either of the straight sides of a racecourse especially : homestretch
b : a final stage (as of a contest or season) won some crucial games down the stretch
8 : the capacity for being stretched : elasticity a waistband with lots of stretch
9 : a stretch limousine

stretch

adjective

Definition of stretch (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : easily stretched : elastic a stretch wig
2 : longer than the standard size a stretch limousine

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Other Words from stretch

Verb

stretchability \ ˌstre-​chə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce stretchability (audio) \ noun
stretchable \ ˈstre-​chə-​bəl How to pronounce stretchable (audio) \ adjective
stretchy \ ˈstre-​chē How to pronounce stretchy (audio) \ adjective

Examples of stretch in a Sentence

Verb Don't yank on my sweater. You'll stretch it. The elastic waistband of my pants won't stretch any more. It's important to stretch before you exercise. The baby stretched and yawned. She woke up and stretched her arms above her head. She stretched over us to open the window. She stretched her hand toward him. She stretched the canvas over the wooden frame. The T-shirt was stretched tight over his belly. A big banner was stretched across the doorway. Noun a 60-mile stretch of beach an open stretch of highway These are good stretches for your leg muscles. I always spend a few minutes doing stretches before I exercise. I can feel the stretch in the back of my legs. Adjective stretch fabrics that don't wrinkle or sag
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb That initial reduction is likely to stretch out over a period of weeks or months. Matthew Lee, Anchorage Daily News, "Official says US and Taliban have reached agreement on a truce in Afghanistan," 14 Feb. 2020 Jans said the team plans on stretching the players out with longer shifts in Sunday's closed-door match against Nashville SC. Pat Brennan, Cincinnati.com, "FC Cincinnati: How the club is preparing for its preseason friendly against Philadelphia Union," 11 Feb. 2020 For Varo, the process of becoming a bank has stretched out more than three years, and CEO Colin Walsh told American Banker that the effort has likely cost the company around $100 million. John Detrixhe, Quartz, "Fintech has finally cracked the US banking sector," 11 Feb. 2020 Take a look how stretched out this frontal system is and several low pressures along it from the Southern Rockies to the Northeast. Max Golembo, ABC News, "Storm system moving across the country with flooding threat," 11 Feb. 2020 The three radio plasma wave antennas stretching out from the side of the orbiter will hunt for radio signals in the solar plasma. Jennifer Leman, Popular Mechanics, "How to Watch Solar Orbiter Launch to the Sun Tonight," 9 Feb. 2020 They can be removed by pulling down on them to stretch out the adhesive, just like removing a 3M Command strip. Dallas News, "Changing an iPhone’s battery is doable but requires patience," 30 Jan. 2020 The best-case scenario is that the Galaxy Fold shows the same amount of information as on an S10+ or OnePlus 7 Pro, just stretched out horizontally a bit. Ron Amadeo, Ars Technica, "Samsung Galaxy Fold review: The future is an ugly disappointment," 24 Jan. 2020 Foley was able to stretch the lead back out, getting six points in the final 2:37 from Jakiya Jackson. Ben Thomas | Bthomas@al.com, al, "No. 3 Foley girls knock off No. 4 McGill-Toolen in wild battle of Class 7A top 5 teams," 11 Jan. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Pavelski now has 15 assists this season and continued his recent hot stretch with eight points in his last six games played. Matthew Defranks, Dallas News, "Tyler Seguin finishes best Stars comeback of the season with an overtime goal against the Canadiens," 16 Feb. 2020 The gap in defensive efficiency between Michigan and the second-best defense over that stretch (Minnesota) is roughly equivalent to the margin between second and seventh. Orion Sang, Detroit Free Press, "How Michigan basketball found its defensive focus again," 15 Feb. 2020 And turnovers, a malady that's found this team at one inopportune stretch or another, robbing all momentum, weren't as much of a factor. Jon Blau, Indianapolis Star, "IU basketball snaps 4-game skid behind Devonte Green's hot shooting," 14 Feb. 2020 That stretch — games against Kentucky, Arkansas, LSU and rival Alabama — would help provide the demarcation for Auburn between being a good team and being a very good team, a line that the Tigers have flirted with throughout the 2019-20 campaign. Tom Green | Tgreen@al.com, al, "Auburn strengthens NCAA Tournament resume and its own mettle after ‘moving week’ gauntlet," 13 Feb. 2020 Now the deal is in the home stretch, with only minor approvals left to secure and final financial terms to be ironed out. Scott Moritz, Fortune, "Now that its merger with Sprint has court approval, T-Mobile’s parent wants to renegotiate the price," 13 Feb. 2020 Annus and Minicozzi combined for 13 points during the stretch, highlighted by Minicozzi’s left-wing 3-pointer with 40 seconds left, which put Belmont ahead for good. Matt Doherty, BostonGlobe.com, "Road to victory for Belmont boys? A 17-2 closing run at Burlington," 11 Feb. 2020 That’s an adjustment for Love, who had been on a torrid stretch, morphing into the offensive focal point again while getting touches inside and outside. Chris Fedor, cleveland, "Andre Drummond, Cleveland Cavaliers preaching patience after Drummond’s debut falls flat: ‘Have to work out my kinks’," 10 Feb. 2020 The last stretch of interstate that remained off-limits after a widespread closure reopened Sunday night. oregonlive, "I-84 reopens near Hermiston as flood recovery continues," 10 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The recent dry and unusually stretch warm weather has this year's crop ready a bit earlier than normal. Taylor Deville, baltimoresun.com/maryland/carroll, "Carroll County, area farmers say recent drought hasn’t stemmed pumpkin supply," 4 Oct. 2019 Del Mar review Sunday’s feature, the Grade 2 $200,000 Del Mar Derby for 3-year-olds going 1 1/8 miles on the turf, was a really good stretch battle where Nolde maneuvered between horse by a great ride by Victor Espinoza to win by a neck. Los Angeles Times, "Racing! Stewards’ rulings are back," 2 Sep. 2019 There have been stretch bigs and bulk rebounders, lob threats and defensive anchors, but none that were all of the above and then some. Rob Mahoney, SI.com, "After Year of Turmoil, Lakers Look Ready to Contend," 15 June 2019 Justin Smith and Race Thompson are both third-year players with the potential athleticism and versatility to play as stretch fours, or perhaps even at the three in a pinch. Zach Osterman, Indianapolis Star, "With plenty of frontcourt options, Trayce Jackson-Davis remains wild card for IU basketball," 29 May 2019 Stretch marks, scars from skin tears as skin expands, can also fade but might not go away. Ashley May, USA TODAY, "Women who've had babies look different. Here's how pregnancy can permanently change a body," 30 Aug. 2017 At 6-8, Bogdanovic is an athletic forward versatile enough to play the stretch power forward in certain lineups and situations. Nate Taylor, Indianapolis Star, "Insider: Bojan Bogdanovic brought to Pacers as a starter," 11 July 2017 Stretch dough to cover as much of the pan as possible, being careful not to tear the dough. Darlene Zimmerman, Detroit Free Press, "Foods rich in carotenoids may help age-related vision loss.," 9 July 2017

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

Verb

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Noun

1541, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

1954, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for stretch

Verb

Middle English strecchen, from Old English streccan; akin to Old High German strecchan to stretch, Old English stræc firm, severe

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Time Traveler for stretch

Time Traveler

The first known use of stretch was before the 12th century

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Statistics for stretch

Last Updated

17 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Stretch.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/stretch. Accessed 28 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for stretch

stretch

verb
How to pronounce stretch (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of stretch

 (Entry 1 of 3)

: to make (something) wider or longer by pulling it
: to become longer or wider when pulled
: to put your arms, legs, etc., in positions that make the muscles long and tight

stretch

noun

English Language Learners Definition of stretch (Entry 2 of 3)

: a continuous area or length of land or water
: a continuous period of time
informal : a period of time spent in prison

stretch

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of stretch (Entry 3 of 3)

: made to stretch easily and then return to the original shape and size

stretch

verb
\ ˈstrech How to pronounce stretch (audio) \
stretched; stretching

Kids Definition of stretch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to reach out : extend, spread I stretched my neck to see better.
2 : to pull or draw out in length or width or both : expand, enlarge Don't stretch my sweater.
3 : to extend (as the body) in a flat position I stretched out on the bed.
4 : to extend the body or limbs You should stretch before exercising.
5 : to pull tight Stretch the canvas over a frame.
6 : to cause to reach or continue A wire was stretched between two posts.
7 : exaggerate I think you're stretching the truth.
8 : to become extended without breaking Rubber stretches easily.
9 : to extend over a continuous period His fascination with dinosaurs stretches back to childhood.

stretch

noun

Kids Definition of stretch (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the act of extending or drawing out beyond ordinary or normal limits The story was a stretch of the imagination.
2 : the ability to be pulled or drawn out in length or width or both The fabric has a lot of stretch.
3 : the act or an instance of stretching the body or one of its parts
4 : a continuous extent in length, area, or time a short stretch of beach a long stretch of silence
\ ˈstrech How to pronounce stretch (audio) \

Medical Definition of stretch

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to extend in length was told to stretch the leg muscles before running
2 : to enlarge or distend especially by force

intransitive verb

1 : to become extended in length or breadth
2 : to extend one's body or limbs

stretch

noun

Medical Definition of stretch (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of stretching : the state of being stretched a muscle or group of muscles in stretch— C. R. Houck

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Comments on stretch

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