tighten

verb
tight·​en | \ ˈtī-tᵊn How to pronounce tighten (audio) \
tightened; tightening\ ˈtīt-​niŋ How to pronounce tightening (audio) , ˈtī-​tᵊn-​iŋ \

Definition of tighten

intransitive verb

: to become tight or tighter
tighten one's belt
: to practice strict economy

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Other Words from tighten

tightener \ ˈtīt-​nər How to pronounce tightener (audio) , ˈtī-​tᵊn-​ər \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for tighten

Synonyms

strain, stretch, tauten, tense

Antonyms

loosen, slack, slacken

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Examples of tighten in a Sentence

She tightened her hold on the handle. tighten the straps on the backpack so that the load doesn't shift while hiking

Recent Examples on the Web

The cold compression will tighten up pores and reduce any morning (or post-drinks) swelling. Diana Nguyen, Harper's BAZAAR, "7 Things You Should Be Doing for a Flawless Complexion," 3 May 2019 Luckily, Kegel exercises can help tighten things up again quickly. Kristi Kellogg, Glamour, "Your Vagina After Birth: 10 Things to Expect," 29 Apr. 2019 In the past week, the national legislature quietly amended a draft of the law to tighten up channels used to leak intellectual property. Chao Deng, WSJ, "China Aims to Placate U.S. With Law Banning Theft of Foreign Trade Secrets," 14 Mar. 2019 Oil prices fall as economic concerns counter tightening supplies. Fox News, "FOX NEWS FIRST: Florence downgraded, but still very dangerous; Another bad night for 'Bernie Sanders Democrats'," 13 Sep. 2018 No answer] Should the Senate take up campaign finance legislation to tighten the rules? Tara Golshan, Vox, "We asked 8 Republican senators if they’ll investigate Trump’s role in campaign finance violations," 22 Aug. 2018 Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has laid out a plan for growth, and is refusing the offer of a precautionary credit line, a financial safety net that would come with new austerity terms after years of belt-tightening. Liz Alderman, New York Times, "As Greece Ends a Decade of Bailouts, Problems Linger for Europe," 19 June 2018 Each contains other strict border security provisions, and would end a visa lottery and tighten rules that let U.S. citizens sponsor relatives for legal status. CBS News, "White House says Trump supports "moderate" GOP immigration bill after confusion," 16 June 2018 Changes in global risk sentiment prompted by Fed tightening can reduce the price of assets held by Americans as well as the prospects and share prices of American multinationals, amplifying the effect of the initial change in policy. The Economist, "Rate rises affect global markets—and may feed back to America," 14 June 2018

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

circa 1727, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

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Statistics for tighten

Last Updated

19 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for tighten

The first known use of tighten was circa 1727

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More Definitions for tighten

tighten

verb

English Language Learners Definition of tighten

: to make (something) tight or tighter or to become tight or tighter

tighten

verb
tight·​en | \ ˈtī-tᵊn How to pronounce tighten (audio) \
tightened; tightening

Kids Definition of tighten

: to make or become tight He tightened his grip.

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More from Merriam-Webster on tighten

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with tighten

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for tighten

Spanish Central: Translation of tighten

Nglish: Translation of tighten for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of tighten for Arabic Speakers

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