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Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To pull, draw, or stretch tight: strained the sheets over the bed.
  • transitive v. To exert or tax to the utmost: straining our ears to hear.
  • transitive v. To injure or impair by overuse or overexertion; wrench: strain a muscle.
  • transitive v. To stretch or force beyond the proper or legitimate limit: strain a point.
  • transitive v. Physics To alter (the relations between the parts of a structure or shape) by applying an external force; deform.
  • transitive v. To pass (gravy, for example) through a filtering agent such as a strainer.
  • transitive v. To draw off or remove by filtration: strained the pulp from the juice.
  • transitive v. To embrace or clasp tightly; hug.
  • intransitive v. To make violent or steady efforts; strive hard: straining to reach the finish line.
  • intransitive v. To be or become wrenched or twisted.
  • intransitive v. To be subjected to great stress.
  • intransitive v. To pull forcibly or violently: The dog strained at its leash.
  • intransitive v. To stretch or exert one's muscles or nerves to the utmost.
  • intransitive v. To filter, trickle, or ooze.
  • intransitive v. To be extremely hesitant; balk: a mule that strained at the lead.
  • n. The act of straining.
  • n. The state of being strained.
  • n. Extreme or laborious effort, exertion, or work.
  • n. A great or excessive pressure, demand, or stress on one's body, mind, or resources: the strain of managing both a family and a career.
  • n. A wrench, twist, or other physical injury resulting from excessive tension, effort, or use.
  • n. Physics A deformation produced by stress.
  • n. An exceptional degree or pitch: a strain of zealous idealism.
  • n. The collective descendants of a common ancestor; a race, stock, line, or breed.
  • n. Any of the various lines of ancestry united in an individual or a family; ancestry or lineage.
  • n. Biology A group of organisms of the same species, having distinctive characteristics but not usually considered a separate breed or variety: a superior strain of wheat; a smooth strain of bacteria.
  • n. An artificial variety of a domestic animal or cultivated plant.
  • n. A kind or sort: imaginings of a morbid strain.
  • n. An inborn or inherited tendency or character.
  • n. An inherent quality; a streak. See Synonyms at streak.
  • n. The tone, tenor, or substance of a verbal utterance or of a particular action or behavior: spoke in a passionate strain.
  • n. A prevailing quality, as of attitude or behavior.
  • n. Music A passage of expression; a tune or an air. Often use in the plural: melodic strains of the violin.
  • n. A passage of poetic and especially lyrical expression.
  • n. An outburst or a flow of eloquent or impassioned language.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Treasure.
  • n. The blood-vessel in the yolk of an egg.
  • n. Race; lineage, pedigree.
  • n. Hereditary character, quality, or disposition.
  • n. A tendency or disposition
  • n. 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
  • n. A particular breed or race of animal, microbe etc.
  • n. 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.
  • n. A kind or sort (of person etc.).
  • v. To hold tightly, to clasp.
  • v. To apply a force or forces to by stretching out.
  • v. To exert or struggle (to do something), especially to stretch (one's senses, faculties etc.) beyond what is normal or comfortable.
  • v. To tighten (the strings of a musical instrument); to uplift (one’s voice).
  • v. To separate solid from liquid by passing through a strainer or colander
  • n. The act of straining, or the state of being strained.
  • n. A violent effort; an excessive and hurtful exertion or tension, as of the muscles.
  • n. An injury resulting from violent effort; a sprain.
  • n. (engineering) The amount by which a material deforms under stress or force, given as a ratio of the deformation to the initial dimension of the material and typically symbolised by ε is termed the engineering strain. The true strain is defined as the natural logarithm of the ratio of the final dimension to the initial dimension.
  • n. The track of a deer.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Race; stock; generation; descent; family.
  • n. Hereditary character, quality, or disposition.
  • n. Rank; a sort.
  • n. A cultural subvariety that is only slightly differentiated.
  • transitive v. To draw with force; to extend with great effort; to stretch.
  • transitive v. To act upon, in any way, so as to cause change of form or volume, as forces on a beam to bend it.
  • transitive v. To exert to the utmost; to ply vigorously.
  • transitive v. To stretch beyond its proper limit; to do violence to, in the matter of intent or meaning.
  • transitive v. To injure by drawing, stretching, or the exertion of force.
  • transitive v. To injure in the muscles or joints by causing to make too strong an effort; to harm by overexertion; to sprain.
  • transitive v. To squeeze; to press closely.
  • transitive v. To make uneasy or unnatural; to produce with apparent effort; to force; to constrain.
  • transitive v. To urge with importunity; to press.
  • transitive v. To press, or cause to pass, through a strainer, as through a screen, a cloth, or some porous substance; to purify, or separate from extraneous or solid matter, by filtration; to filter.
  • intransitive v. To make violent efforts.
  • intransitive v. To percolate; to be filtered.
  • n. The act of straining, or the state of being strained.
  • n. A violent effort; an excessive and hurtful exertion or tension, as of the muscles; also, the hurt or injury resulting; a sprain.
  • n. A change of form or dimensions of a solid or liquid mass, produced by a stress.
  • n. 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.
  • n. 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; also, a course of action or conduct.
  • n. Turn; tendency; inborn disposition. Cf. 1st Strain.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To draw out; stretch; extend, especially with effort or care.
  • To draw tight; tighten; make taut.
  • To confine; restrain; imprison.
  • To stretch to the utmost tension; put to the stretch; exert: as, to strain every nerve to accomplish something.
  • To stretch beyond measure; push beyond the proper extent or limit; carry too far.
  • To impair, weaken, or injure by stretching or overtasking; harm by subjection to too great stress or exertion; hence, to sprain.
  • To force; constrain.
  • To urge; press.
  • To press; squeeze; hence, to hug; embrace.
  • To press through a filter or colander; separate extraneous or coarser matters from (a liquid) by causing it to pass through a filter or colander; purify from extraneous matter by filtration; filter: as, to strain milk.
  • To separate or remove by the use of a filter or colander: with out. See phrase under intransitive verb, below.
  • To force out by straining.
  • To deform, as a solid body or structure.
  • = Syn. 10. Bolt, Screen, etc. See sift.
  • To exert one's self; make violent efforts; strive.
  • To urge; press.
  • To stretch strugglingly; stretch with effort.
  • To undergo distortions under force, as a ship in a high sea.
  • To drip; ooze; filter; drain; flow; issue: as, water straining through sand becomes pure.
  • n. Stretch; extent; pitch.
  • n. Stretching or deforming force or pressure; violence.
  • n. Tense or constrained state or condition; tension; great effort.
  • n. In mech., a definite change in the shape or size of a solid body setting up an elastic resistance, or stress, or exceeding the limit of elasticity.
  • n. A stretching of the muscles or tendons, giving rise to subsequent pain and stiffness; sprain; wrench; twist.
  • n. A permanent deformation or injury of a solid structure.
  • n. Stretch; flight or burst, as of imagination, eloquence, or song.
  • n. Tune; melody.
  • n. In a stricter sense, in music, a section of a piece which is more or less complete in itself. In written music the strains are often marked by double bars.
  • n. Tone; key; style or manner of speech or conduct.
  • n. Mood; disposition.
  • n. Relatively to another strain, a strain orthogonal to a stress perfectly concurrent to the other strain.
  • n. Race; stock; generation; descent; hence, family blood; quality or line as regards breeding; breed; a race or breed; a variety, especially an artificial variety, of a domestic animal.
  • n. Hereditary or natural disposition; turn; tendency; character.
  • n. Sort; kind; style.
  • n. Trace; streak.
  • n. The shoot of a tree.
  • n. The track of a deer.
  • To distrain.
  • In photography, said of a lens when an object is brought so near that the image appears distorted.
  • n. In agriculture and horticulture, a group of cultivated plants derived from a race which does not differ from the original race in visible taxonomic characters, but into which has been bred some intrinsic quality, such as a tendency to yield heavily, or a better adaptability to a certain environment. If a breeder by the careful selection of blue-stem wheat should produce a sort of blue-stem which differs from the original race only in the ability to give greater yields, it would be called a strain of blue-stem.
  • n. A name given in Ireland to long masses of half-molded peat before the latter is cut up into briquets for drying and subsequent burning. The peat is excavated from the bog, and by a machine is torn, comminuted, kneaded, and pressed, leaving the machine in continuous rods or bars (strains). On drying, the strains shrink to about half their size when wet.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a special variety of domesticated animals within a species
  • v. remove by passing through a filter
  • n. difficulty that causes worry or emotional tension
  • n. a succession of notes forming a distinctive sequence
  • v. use to the utmost; exert vigorously or to full capacity
  • n. (psychology) nervousness resulting from mental stress
  • v. separate by passing through a sieve or other straining device to separate out coarser elements
  • n. an effortful attempt to attain a goal
  • v. to exert much effort or energy
  • n. the general meaning or substance of an utterance
  • n. (physics) deformation of a physical body under the action of applied forces
  • v. rub through a strainer or process in an electric blender
  • n. an intense or violent exertion
  • n. (biology) a group of organisms within a species that differ in trivial ways from similar groups
  • n. the act of singing
  • v. cause to be tense and uneasy or nervous or anxious
  • n. injury to a muscle (often caused by overuse); results in swelling and pain
  • v. test the limits of
  • v. become stretched or tense or taut
  • v. alter the shape of (something) by stress

Etymologies

Middle English streinen, from Old French estreindre, estrein-, to bind tightly, from Latin stringere.
Middle English strene, from Old English strēon, something gained, progeny.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Old English strēon, ġestrēon, from Germanic, from Proto-Indo-European *streu ( cognate with Latin strues ("heap")) (Wiktionary)
Old French estreindre ( > French étreindre ("to grip")), from Latin stringere ("to draw tight together, to tie"). (Wiktionary)

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