English dictionary

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English noun: strain

1. strain (phenomenon) (physics) deformation of a physical body under the action of applied forces

Broader (hypernym)deformation

Narrower (hyponym)overstrain

Domain categorynatural philosophy, physics

2. strain (state) difficulty that causes worry or emotional tension

SamplesShe endured the stresses and strains of life.
He presided over the economy during the period of the greatest stress and danger.


Broader (hypernym)difficulty

3. strain (communication) a succession of notes forming a distinctive sequence

SamplesShe was humming an air from Beethoven.

Synonymsair, line, melodic line, melodic phrase, melody, tune

Broader (hypernym)music

Narrower (hyponym)fanfare, flourish, glissando, idea, leitmotif, leitmotiv, melodic theme, musical theme, part, roulade, signature, signature tune, theme, theme song, theme song, tucket, voice

Part holonymmusical phrase, phrase

4. strain (state) (psychology) nervousness resulting from mental stress

SamplesHis responsibilities were a constant strain.
The mental strain of staying alert hour after hour was too much for him.

Synonymsmental strain, nervous strain

Broader (hypernym)nerves, nervousness

Narrower (hyponym)stress, tenseness, tension

Domain categorypsychological science, psychology

5. strain (group) a special variety of domesticated animals within a species

SamplesHe experimented on a particular breed of white rats.
He created a new strain of sheep.

Synonymsbreed, stock

Broader (hypernym)animal group, variety

Narrower (hyponym)bloodstock, pedigree

Member meronymspecies

6. strain (group) (biology) a group of organisms within a species that differ in trivial ways from similar groups

SamplesA new strain of microorganisms.

Synonymsform, var., variant

Broader (hypernym)taxon, taxonomic category, taxonomic group

Member meronymspecies

Domain categorybiological science, biology

7. strain (state) injury to a muscle (often caused by overuse); results in swelling and pain

Broader (hypernym)harm, hurt, injury, trauma

8. strain (cognition) the general meaning or substance of an utterance

SamplesAlthough I disagreed with him I could follow the tenor of his argument.


Broader (hypernym)meaning, substance

Narrower (hyponym)drift, purport

9. strain (act) an effortful attempt to attain a goal

Synonymsnisus, pains, striving

Broader (hypernym)attempt, effort, endeavor, endeavour, try

Narrower (hyponym)jehad, jihad

10. strain (act) an intense or violent exertion


Broader (hypernym)effort, elbow grease, exertion, sweat, travail

11. strain (act) the act of singing

SamplesWith a shout and a song they marched up to the gates.


Broader (hypernym)vocal music

Narrower (hyponym)carol, cradlesong, lullaby

English verb: strain

1. strain (competition) to exert much effort or energy

SamplesStraining our ears to hear.

Synonymsreach, strive

Pattern of useSomebody ----s.
Somebody ----s PP

Broader (hypernym)drive, labor, labour, push, tug

Narrower (hyponym)bother, extend oneself, inconvenience oneself, kill oneself, overexert oneself, trouble, trouble oneself

2. strain (emotion) test the limits of

SamplesYou are trying my patience!.

Synonymsstress, try

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something

Broader (hypernym)afflict

Narrower (hyponym)rack

3. strain (consumption) use to the utmost; exert vigorously or to full capacity

SamplesHe really extended himself when he climbed Kilimanjaro.
Don't strain your mind too much.


Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something

Broader (hypernym)apply, employ, use, utilise, utilize

Narrower (hyponym)overextend, overstrain, task, tax

4. strain (contact) separate by passing through a sieve or other straining device to separate out coarser elements

SamplesSift the flour.

Synonymssieve, sift

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something

Broader (hypernym)separate

Narrower (hyponym)fan, resift, rice, riddle, screen, winnow

5. strain (body) cause to be tense and uneasy or nervous or anxious

SamplesHe got a phone call from his lawyer that tensed him up.

Synonymstense, tense up

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s somebody

Broader (hypernym)affect

Narrower (hyponym)extend, stretch

Causetense, tense up

Antonymsmake relaxed, unlax, unstrain, relax, unwind, loosen up

6. strain (contact) become stretched or tense or taut

SamplesThe bodybuilder's neck muscles tensed;.
The rope strained when the weight was attached.


Pattern of useSomething ----s

Broader (hypernym)tighten

7. strain (contact) remove by passing through a filter

SamplesFilter out the impurities.

Synonymsfilter, filter out, filtrate, separate out

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something

Broader (hypernym)separate

8. strain (contact) rub through a strainer or process in an electric blender

SamplesPuree the vegetables for the baby.


Pattern of useSomething ----s something

Broader (hypernym)rub

Domain categorycookery, cooking, preparation

9. strain (change) alter the shape of (something) by stress

SamplesHis body was deformed by leprosy.

Synonymsdeform, distort

Pattern of useSomebody ----s something.
Something ----s something

Broader (hypernym)form, shape

Narrower (hyponym)jaundice

Based on WordNet 3.0 copyright © Princeton University.
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