Strain definition

strān
(physics) Any of several kinds of deformation of the dimensions of a body when subjected to stress, as axial strain or elastic strain.
noun
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The extent to which a body is distorted when it is subjected to a deforming force, as when under stress. The distortion can involve a change both in shape and in size. All measures of strain are dimensionless (they have no unit of measure). &diamf3; Axial strain is equal to the ratio between the change in length of an object and its original length. &diamf3; Volume strain is equal to the ratio between the change in volume of an object and its original volume. It is also called bulk strain. &diamf3; Shear strain is equal to the ratio between the amount by which an object is skewed and its length.
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A kind or sort.

Imaginings of a morbid strain.

noun
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An inborn or inherited tendency or character.

A strain of eccentricity in the family.

noun
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To injure or impair by overuse or overexertion; wrench.
verb
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Strain is defined as to exert or stretch to the maximum or to injure by too much exertion.

An example of strain is for a spectator to stretch over his seat to see a concert.

An example of strain is for a football player to pull a muscle from playing too roughly.

verb
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To draw off or remove by filtration.

Strained the pulp from the juice.

verb
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The tone, tenor, or substance of a verbal utterance or of a particular action or behavior.

Spoke in a passionate strain.

noun
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(music) A passage of expression; a tune or an air.

Melodic strains of the violin.

noun
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A passage of poetry, esp. of a lyric sort.
noun
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A wrench, twist, or other physical injury resulting from excessive tension, effort, or use.
noun
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(literary) Any sustained note or movement; a song; a distinct portion of an ode or other poem; also, the pervading note, or burden, of a song, poem, oration, book, etc.; theme; motive; manner; style.
noun
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A passage of poetic and especially lyrical expression.
noun
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A passage of music; tune; air.
noun
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The definition of a strain is a bodily injury due to overexertion or an excessive demand on resources.

An example of strain is a pulled muscle.

An example of strain is reading a book in the dark, causing pressure on the eyes.

noun
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To pass (a liquid) through a filtering agent such as a strainer.
verb
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To pull or push forcibly or violently.

The dog strained at its leash.

verb
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To be or become wrenched or twisted.

The flagpole straining in the wind.

verb
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To be subjected to great stress.

With such busy lives, the marriage can strain.

verb
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To pass through a filtering agent.

The muddy water strains slowly.

verb
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To make strong or steady efforts; strive hard.

Straining to complete the coursework.

verb
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To contract or exert one's muscles to the utmost.
verb
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The state of being strained.

The strain on the cable.

noun
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Extreme or laborious effort, exertion, or work.

Moved the sofa with little strain.

noun
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A great or excessive demand or stress on one's body, mind, or resources.

The strain of managing both a family and a career.

noun
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The state of being subjected to such demands or stresses.

Trying to work under great strain.

noun
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A group of bacteria or viruses that are genetically distinct from other groups of the same species.
noun
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A group of cultivated plants or domestic animals of the same species that have distinctive characteristics but are not considered a separate breed or variety.
noun
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The collective descendants of a common ancestor; a race, stock, line, or breed.
noun
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Any of the various lines of ancestry united in an individual or a family; ancestry or lineage.
noun
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An inherent quality; a streak.
noun
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An outburst or a flow of eloquent or impassioned language.
noun
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(obs.) To force; constrain.
verb
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To pass through a screen, sieve, filter, etc.; filter.
verb
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To remove or free by filtration, etc.
verb
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A flight or outburst of eloquence, profanity, etc.
noun
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(taxonomy, genetics) A line of individuals of a certain species or race, differentiated from the main group by certain qualities, often, specif., superior qualities resulting from artificial breeding.
noun
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A begetting.
noun
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Offspring.
noun
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To pass a liquid through a filtering agent.
verb
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The act of straining.
noun
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The state of being strained.
noun
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Extreme or laborious effort, exertion, or work.
noun
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A great or excessive pressure, demand, or stress on one's body, mind, or resources.
noun
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A group of bacteria or viruses that are genetically distinct from other groups of the same species.
noun
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A group of cultivated plants or domestic animals of the same species that have distinctive characteristics but are not considered a separate breed or variety.
noun
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The collective descendants of a common ancestor; a race, stock, line, or breed.
noun
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Any of the various lines of ancestry united in an individual or a family; ancestry or lineage.
noun
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A group of organisms of the same species, sharing certain hereditary characteristics not typical of the entire species but minor enough not to warrant classification as a separate breed or variety. Resistance to specific antibiotics is a feature of certain strains of bacteria.
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(archaic) Race; lineage, pedigree.
noun
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There is a strain of madness in her family.

noun
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A tendency or disposition.
noun
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(biology) A particular breed or race of animal, microbe etc.

They say this year's flu virus is a particularly virulent strain.

noun
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(music) A portion of music divided off by a double bar; a complete musical period or sentence; a movement, or any rounded subdivision of a movement.
noun
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(rare) A kind or sort (of person etc.).
noun
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Dryden.

Evander with a close embrace / Strained his departing friend.

verb
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To apply a force or forces to by stretching out.

To strain a rope; to strain the shrouds of a ship.

Relations between the United States and Guatemala traditionally have been close, although at times strained by human rights and civil/military issues.

verb
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To damage by drawing, stretching, or the exertion of force.

The gale strained the timbers of the ship.

verb
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To act upon, in any way, so as to cause change of form or volume, as when bending a beam.
verb
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To exert or struggle (to do something), especially to stretch (one's senses, faculties etc.) beyond what is normal or comfortable.

Sitting in back, I strained to hear the speaker.

verb
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To stretch beyond its proper limit; to do violence to, in terms of intent or meaning.

To strain the law in order to convict an accused person.

verb
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To tighten (the strings of a musical instrument); to uplift (one's voice).
verb
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To separate solid from liquid by passing through a strainer or colander.
verb
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(intransitive) To percolate; to be filtered.

Water straining through a sandy soil.

verb
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To make uneasy or unnatural; to produce with apparent effort; to force; to constrain.
verb
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To urge with importunity; to press.

To strain a petition or invitation.

verb
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The act of straining, or the state of being strained.
noun
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A violent effort; an excessive and hurtful exertion or tension, as of the muscles.

He jumped up with a strain; the strain upon the sailboat's rigging.

noun
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An injury resulting from violent effort; a sprain.
noun
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(uncountable, engineering) A dimensionless measure of object deformation either referring to engineering strain or true strain.
noun
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To hug or embrace.
verb
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Great effort, exertion, or tension.
noun
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To injure or impair by overuse or overexertion; wrench.

Strain a muscle.

verb
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To damage or weaken by pressure or tension.

Winds that strained the mast.

verb
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To force beyond the proper or reasonable limit.

An excuse that strains credulity.

verb
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(archaic) To embrace or clasp tightly; hug.
verb
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To pull, draw, or stretch tight.

The heavy load strained the rope.

verb
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(physics) To cause distortion of (a body's parts or shape) by applying an external force; deform.
verb
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A wrench, twist, or other physical injury resulting from excessive tension, effort, or use.
noun
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An exceptional degree or pitch.

A strain of zealous idealism.

noun
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The act of straining.
noun
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To draw or stretch tight.
verb
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To exert, use, or tax to the utmost.

To strain every nerve.

verb
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To overtax; injure by overexertion; wrench.

To strain a muscle.

verb
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To injure or weaken by force, pressure, etc.

The wind strained the roof.

verb
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To stretch or force beyond the normal, customary, or legitimate limits.

To strain a rule to one's own advantage.

verb
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To make violent or continual efforts; strive hard.
verb
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To be or become strained.
verb
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To be subjected to great stress or pressure.
verb
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To pull or push with force.
verb
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To filter, ooze, or trickle.
verb
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To hesitate or be unwilling; balk (at)
verb
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A straining or being strained.
noun
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An injury to a part of the body as a result of great effort or overexertion.

Muscle strain.

noun
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A great or excessive demand on one's emotions, resources, etc.

A strain on the imagination.

noun
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Change in form or size, or both, resulting from stress or force.
noun
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Stress or force.
noun
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Ancestry; lineage; descent.
noun
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The descendants of a common ancestor; race; stock; line; breed; variety.
noun
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An inherited or natural characteristic or tendency.
noun
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A trace; streak.
noun
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The manner, style, or tone of a speech, book, action, etc.

To write in an angry strain.

noun
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To pull, draw, or stretch tight.
verb
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To stretch or exert one's muscles or nerves to the utmost.
verb
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To draw off or remove by filtration.
verb
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To exert, use, or tax to the utmost.

Straining our ears to hear.

verb
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To change the form or size of, by applying external force.
verb
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strain at stool
  • To have difficulty defecating.
idiom
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Other Word Forms

Noun

Singular:
strain
Plural:
strains

Idioms and Phrasal Verbs

strain at stool

Origin of strain

  • Middle English streinen from Old French estreindre estrein- to bind tightly from Latin stringere streig- in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Middle English strene from Old English strēon something gained, progeny ster-2 in Indo-European roots

    From American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition

  • Old English strÄ“on, Ä¡estrÄ“on, from Germanic, from Proto-Indo-European *streu (cognate with Latin strues (“heap")).

    From Wiktionary

  • Old French estreindre (whence French étreindre (“to grip")), from Latin stringere (“to draw tight together, to tie").

    From Wiktionary