Synonyms & Antonyms of shrink

1 to become smaller in size or volume through the drawing together of particles of matter
  • the sweater will shrink a little when washed

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2 to draw back in fear, pain, or disgust
  • shrinking back from the approaching flames

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3 to grow less in scope or intensity especially gradually
  • his crush on her is likely to shrink after they start their new lives on different college campuses

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contract, shrink, condense, compress, constrict, deflate mean to decrease in bulk or volume. contract applies to a drawing together of surfaces or particles or a reduction of area or length. caused her muscles to contract shrink implies a contracting or a loss of material and stresses a falling short of original dimensions. the sweater will shrink when washed condense implies a reducing of something homogeneous to greater compactness without significant loss of content. condense the essay into a paragraph compress implies a pressing into a small compass and definite shape usually against resistance. compressed cotton into bales constrict implies a tightening that reduces diameter. the throat is constricted by a tight collar deflate implies a contracting by reducing the internal pressure of contained air or gas. deflate the balloon

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Time Traveler for shrink

Time Traveler

The first known use of shrink was before the 12th century

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Cite this Entry

“Shrink.” The Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 26 January 2020.

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More from Merriam-Webster on shrink

Dictionary: Definition of shrink

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shrink

Medical Dictionary: Definition of shrink

Spanish Central: Translation of shrink

Nglish: Translation of shrink for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of shrink for Arabic Speakers

Comments on shrink

What made you want to look up shrink? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to express in a more acceptable way

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