\ ˈtīt How to pronounce tight (audio) \

Definition of tight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : having elements close together a tight formation a tight line of type
b : so close in structure as to prevent passage or escape (as of liquid, gas, or light) a tight ship a tight seal — compare lightproof, watertight
c : fitting very close to the body tight jeans also : too snug tight shoes
d(1) : closely packed : very full a tight bale of hay
(2) : barely allowing time for completion a tight schedule tight deadlines
e : allowing little or no room for free motion or movement a tight connection a tight crawl space also : having a small radius a tight turn
2a : strongly fixed or held : secure a tight jar lid a tight grip on the ladder
b(1) : not slack or loose : taut kept the reins tight a tight knot a tight drumhead also : marked by firmness and muscle tone a tight stomach
(2) : marked by unusual tension (as in the face or body) lips tight with anger a family tight with fear
3a : difficult to cope with in a tight spot financially
b : relatively difficult to obtain money is tight just now also : characterized by such difficulty a tight job market
c : not liberal in giving : stingy tight with a penny
4 : characterized by little difference in the relative positions of contestants with respect to final outcome : close a tight race for mayor
5a : characterized by firmness or strictness in control or application or in attention to details tight security ran a tight newsroom keeps a tight hand on her investments
b : marked by control or discipline in expression or style : having little or no extraneous matter tight writing
c : characterized by a polished style and precise arrangements in music performance
6 : having a close personal or working relationship : intimate is tight with the boss
7 : being such that the subject fills the frame a tight close-up
8 : somewhat drunk
9 chiefly dialectal : capable, competent



Definition of tight (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : fast, tightly, firmly the door was shut tight
2 : in a sound manner : soundly sleep tight

Other Words from tight


tightly adverb
tightness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for tight

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of tight in a Sentence

Adjective The lid is too tight. I can't loosen it. She made a tight knot in the rope. Keep a tight grip on his hand when you cross the street. Pull the ribbon tight and make a bow. Adverb Is the door shut tight? She screwed the cap on tight. Don't close the lid so tight. We were packed as tight as sardines on the bus. See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Men in tight button-ups and women in skirts and heels tumbled out of Corvettes and Teslas in the parking lot and lined up in front of earpiece-wearing security guards. New York Times, 16 May 2022 While Friday’s report showed that employers continue to hire at a brisk pace, the supply of workers remains tight. Josh Mitchell, WSJ, 6 May 2022 By other measures, the job market remains unusually tight. Irina Ivanova, CBS News, 6 May 2022 All of this is consistent with a labor market that remains very tight, with employers struggling to fill job vacancies. Harry Holzer, Forbes, 6 May 2022 But some of the region’s most prominent autocrats, such as Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic, have kept their tight grip on power after convincingly winning votes in their countries earlier this month. Ali Zerdin, ajc, 25 Apr. 2022 Supply of homes remains tight, and professional investors are flooding the market. Julia Horowitz, CNN, 21 Apr. 2022 The inventory of homes for sale remains extremely tight, with far more buyers than sellers. Democrat-gazette Staff From Wire Reports, Arkansas Online, 15 Apr. 2022 Sullivan conceded that although Putin has suffered several setbacks in his mission to topple the Ukrainian government, his tight grip on media has prevented Russians from hearing the truth. Armando Garcia, ABC News, 10 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb Pull the string tight to hold the wood in position. Bradley Ford, Popular Mechanics, 2 May 2022 Lavigne's slouching around her ankles and Rodrigo's laced up tight to her knees. Aimée Lutkin, ELLE, 30 Apr. 2022 High-speed sweepers collapse into tight, climbing switchbacks. Dan Edmunds, Car and Driver, 29 Apr. 2022 Supplies of soybean oil, another alternative to sunflower and palm oil, have also run tight amid a drought in South America. Nicholas Gordon, Fortune, 25 Apr. 2022 Outside of his music, Kirk has been more tight-lipped on specifics. Cheyenne Roundtree, Rolling Stone, 24 Apr. 2022 Ryan provided a highlight-reel goal down the stretch with a behind-the-back finish in tight. Jacob Steinberg, Baltimore Sun, 22 Apr. 2022 Weisenberg advised wearing a tight-fitting, high-quality mask for as long as possible. Morgan Hines, USA TODAY, 21 Apr. 2022 And with the labor market still tight, employers are fielding calls from workers asking for more flexibility or raises. New York Times, 20 Apr. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'tight.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of tight


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


1680, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for tight


Middle English tiht, thyht dense, solid, watertight, of Scandinavian origin; akin to Old Norse thēttr tight; akin to Middle High German dīhte thick, Sanskrit tanakti it causes to coagulate

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

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Last Updated

18 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Tight.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tight. Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for tight


\ ˈtīt How to pronounce tight (audio) \
tighter; tightest

Kids Definition of tight

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : very closely packed or compressed a tight bundle a tight fist
2 : fixed or held very firmly in place a tight jar cover
3 : fitting too closely tight shoes
4 : firmly stretched or drawn : taut Pull the rope until it's tight.
5 : difficult to get through or out of I'm in a tight spot.
6 : firm in control She keeps a tight hand on affairs.
8 : low in supply : scarce Money is tight until I get paid.
9 : painfully or uncomfortably tense a tight throat
10 : barely allowing enough time a tight schedule

Other Words from tight

tightly adverb
tightness noun



Kids Definition of tight (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : in a firm, secure, or close manner Shut the door tight. Hold on tight.
2 : in a deep and uninterrupted manner : soundly Sleep tight.

More from Merriam-Webster on tight

Nglish: Translation of tight for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tight for Arabic Speakers


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