\ 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 Gronkowski, 33, walks away from the game as one of — if not the best — tight ends in NFL history. Lorenzo Reyes, USA TODAY, 21 June 2022 As the market remains tight and new listings also decline, May saw the smallest drop in active listings since November 2019. Brenda Richardson, Forbes, 20 June 2022 Lasky used a single-point-perspective camera for tight framing to capture Buzz’s initial solitude and to guide the viewer’s eye. Jazz Tangcay, Variety, 20 June 2022 Hanna and Haley Cavinder, twins who play college basketball at Miami, have attracted 4 million followers and a string of lucrative NIL deals with a TikTok account that features them dancing in bikinis and tight dresses. Los Angeles Times, 20 June 2022 The tight staffing and scheduling has limited airlines' ability to recover from bad weather events such as those that occurred across the nation last week. Chris Isidore, CNN, 20 June 2022 Binnie’s tight third-person narration sticks closely to the figure that each chapter follows: mostly Maria, later James, and, for one chapter, Steph. Stephanie Burt, The New Yorker, 20 June 2022 Pay attention, pal, fastball coming high and tight. Neil Senturia, San Diego Union-Tribune, 20 June 2022 Because the motor and canister can be placed out of the way, these vacuums are easier to maneuver into tight spaces and to use on stairs than uprights are. Carolyn Forté, Good Housekeeping, 14 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adverb While other streaming services are still staying tight-lipped, Netflix has been unusually open about its strategy. Heather Kelly, Washington Post, 22 June 2022 While Legend remained tight-lipped about any updates, his voice beamed with enthusiasm when speaking about his new project. Okla Jones, Essence, 17 June 2022 Bullock said local organizers and the observers had a good exchange of ideas, but that their guests were pretty tight-lipped about how Utah’s facilities rate compared to other potential hosts. Julie Jag, The Salt Lake Tribune, 24 May 2022 Law enforcement officials have remained tight-lipped about the slew of documents the man charged in the Buffalo shooting may have posted online before the attack. Will Carless, USA TODAY, 22 May 2022 Hernandez is the only new member of the group, which has become tight-knit and has mostly played above expectations the past couple of years. Bob Mcmanaman, The Arizona Republic, 8 June 2022 Still, many Americans are holding on tight to their constitutional right to bear arms. Alexandra Meeks, CNN, 26 May 2022 But after holding tight, as 14-point underdogs, in an ugly game that remained tied deep into the third quarter, the Buffalo Bills started looking like themselves again — and the Dolphins like themselves. David Furones, sun-sentinel.com, 31 Oct. 2021 However, that move has backfired in some ways, especially since Republicans have stymied progress by holding tight to their redistricting powers rather than join the effort in the name of fairness. Summer Meza, The Week, 18 Oct. 2021 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

23 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Tight.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tight. Accessed 29 Jun. 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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