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

In another shakeup at ABC, two top executives at the network’s television production unit — Patrick Moran and Howard Davine — are departing the company as the new Fox regime tightens its grip. Meg James, latimes.com, "Jonnie Davis becomes president of ABC Studios, replacing Disney veteran Patrick Moran," 10 July 2019 In the company's most recent quarter, profit rose 67%, but that was due entirely to yet another round of belt-tightening. Julia Horowitz, CNN, "Deutsche Bank may have just taken the first step of a dramatic overhaul," 5 July 2019 Monday was the anniversary of Hong Kong’s handover from Britain to China in 1997, a traditional day of protest for people who oppose China’s tightening grip. Javier C. Hernández, New York Times, "Hong Kong Protesters Storm Legislature, Dividing the Movement," 1 July 2019 The Trump administration is tightening sanctions only a year after Raul Castro stepped down, leaving someone outside the family dynasty in charge of the island for the first time in nearly 60 years. Author: Anthony Faiola, Anchorage Daily News, "As sanctions bite in Cuba, the U.S. — once a driver of hope — is now a source of pain," 24 June 2019 Investors currently appear sanguine about the likelihood that the end of the Fed tightening cycle will put the economy on firm footing, offsetting any negative surprises in future economic activity that may be implicit in the recent yield decline. Jessica Menton, WSJ, "S&P 500 Hits Record Close After Fed Hints at Interest-Rate Cut," 20 June 2019 But proposed green belt-tightening among hoi polloi was not matched by a cutback in their second and third homes, overseas vacations, luxury cars, private jets, and high-tech appurtenances. Victor Davis Hanson, National Review, "Why Are the Western Middle Classes So Angry?," 13 June 2019 But proposed green belt-tightening among hoi polloi was not matched by a cutback in second and third homes, overseas vacations, luxury cars, private jets and high-tech appurtenances. Victor Davis Hanson, The Mercury News, "Hanson: Why are Western middle classes revolting against the elites?," 13 June 2019 There have been other signs of Beijing’s tightening grip on the semiautonomous enclave. Time, "Massive Protest Held in Hong Kong Against Proposal to Ease Extradition to China," 9 June 2019

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

14 Jul 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

Comments on tighten

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