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 stretch (audio) \ noun
stretchable \ ˈstre-​chə-​bəl How to pronounce stretch (audio) \ adjective
stretchy \ ˈstre-​chē How to pronounce stretch (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 Having big men that can stretch the floor is key in the pick-and-pop plays the Gophers run in their ball screen offense, but Robbins and company can maybe get carried away at times with jump shots. Marcus Fuller, Star Tribune, "Gophers' backcourt needs a boost Thursday at Rutgers," 4 Feb. 2021 The Spurs are counting on Dieng to stretch the floor with his 3-point shooting and protect the rim. Tom Orsborn, San Antonio Express-News, "Spurs could be without Gorgui Dieng for a week," 1 Apr. 2021 Aldridge brings a smooth midrange jump shot and the ability to stretch the floor. BostonGlobe.com, "With clear eyes, Toronto says goodbye to championship core — except Kyle Lowry," 27 Mar. 2021 Melli’s greatest asset on the court is his ability to stretch the floor as a big, but that hasn’t quite translated at the NBA level. Brice Paterik, Dallas News, "5 things to know about Mavericks PF Nicolo Melli, including his dual citizenship," 26 Mar. 2021 His ability to stretch defenses with three-point shooting and his size inside is valuable commodity. Erick Smith, USA TODAY, "Eight unappreciated breakout players in the men's NCAA Tournament Sweet 16," 26 Mar. 2021 Midtgaard is complemented by 6-10 senior Alessandro Lever, who can stretch the defense with his ability to make 3-pointers. Richard Obert, The Arizona Republic, "Grand Canyon's Asbjorn Midtgaard has work cut out against Iowa's Luka Garza in NCAAs," 17 Mar. 2021 Elasticity refers to the ability of the material to stretch, change its shape and return to its original form. Popsci Commerce Team, Popular Science, "Best memory foam mattress: Sleep better on one of these picks," 25 Jan. 2021 John Metchie is an above-average No. 2 who can stretch the field, but slot man Slade Bolden has a sore ankle. Creg Stephenson | Cstephenson@al.com, al, "Iron Bowl 2020 position by position: Who has the edge?," 25 Nov. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun The Celtics can no longer accept lackadaisical lapses in this stretch. BostonGlobe.com, "Celtics needed a gutsy effort: Enter Marcus Smart," 8 Apr. 2021 This three-game stretch began with a season-high 45 in last week's win over Chicago. Duane Rankin, The Arizona Republic, "Still disrespected? Devin Booker 8th on ESPN's 'best 25 under 25' list," 7 Apr. 2021 The Lakers have been playing well on defense in this stretch without their stars, and turning that defense into offense will help mitigate the losses to injury that are unavoidable. Dan Woike, Los Angeles Times, "With LeBron James and Anthony Davis out, Lakers know they need to shoot more," 5 Apr. 2021 The opening salvo of this home stretch happens tomorrow night with Daniel Kaluuya’s first turn at hosting Saturday Night Live. Anne Victoria Clark, Vulture, "SNL to Take on Big Book With Daniel Kaluuya," 2 Apr. 2021 Like many in this rural stretch of Guatemala, Dilcia’s family was down to one meal a day. Washington Post, "The reason many Guatemalans are coming to the border? A profound hunger crisis.," 1 Apr. 2021 The small burial ground is the only open space clear of trees and brush for miles, save the roads that zigzag through this stretch of the Daniel Boone National Forest in southeast Kentucky. Andre Toran, The Courier-Journal, "Fighting fire with fire. Why controlled burns are vital for Kentucky's national forests," 31 Mar. 2021 Starting with the Wizards, this stretch represents the Pacers' best chance to get back above .500 and make a push for the No. 6 seed to avoid the play-in tournament. J. Michael, The Indianapolis Star, "Insider: Next 7 games will determine Pacers direction, playing hard can't be optional," 29 Mar. 2021 Resolutely traditional and almost entirely Muslim, there is nowhere more authentically Swahili along this stretch of shoreline. Peter Browne, Condé Nast Traveler, "Island-Hopping in Kenya's Lamu Archipelago," 25 Mar. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective But the shots had not been falling down the stretch run of the season. Mike Rodak | Mrodak@al.com, al, "Maryland had ‘no answers’ for Alabama’s sudden onslaught of shooting," 23 Mar. 2021 The Warriors twice closed within two points, once in the third quarter and again off a Tommy Anthony steal and score during the stretch run of the fourth quarter. Matt Goul, cleveland, "State champions again, Lutheran East holds off Worthington Christian for Division III title," 21 Mar. 2021 Is Good’s behavior during the stretch run of the San Felipe to nothing more than inexperience. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, "Horse racing newsletter: New leader in Kentucky Derby rankings," 12 Mar. 2021 Sunday’s result: Purda Vita led gate to mid-stretch then faded badly to finish off the board. John Cherwa, Los Angeles Times, "Horse racing newsletter: Santa Anita to reopen to fans," 19 Mar. 2021 It was expanded this season to discourage tanking and to inject excitement into the stretch run of a condensed schedule that has seen games played in mostly empty buildings. ... Joe Freeman, oregonlive, "Latest NBA trade rumors, vaccines have arrived, coronavirus is killing practice, Trail Blazers’ defensive challenge, Chris Webber’s Hall of Fame case: NBA news and notes," 15 Mar. 2021 Its made of a mid-weight, non-stretch cotton denim and comes in a versatile light gray wash. Nicola Fumo, Forbes, "40 Of The Best Jeans For Women, In Every Size And Style," 10 Mar. 2021 Debose pulled up to the law offices of Francisco Hernandez in the super-stretch turbo diesel limo at 10:30 a.m. Washington Post, "Inside the stretch limo where ‘Tiger King’ star Joe Exotic’s team waited for a pardon that never came," 20 Jan. 2021 Think: shoulder bags, leather trenches, non-stretch jeans, and bucket hats. Eliza Huber, refinery29.com, "Zerina Akers’ Thrilling Edit Spotlights Black-Owned Vintage Stores — & Includes Rare Patrick Kelly Pieces," 11 Dec. 2020

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

13 Apr 2021

Cite this Entry

“Stretch.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/stretch. Accessed 13 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for stretch

stretch

verb

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

stretch

transitive verb
\ 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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