English dictionary



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English noun: tension

1. tension (state) (psychology) a state of mental or emotional strain or suspense


SamplesHe suffered from fatigue and emotional tension.
Stress is a vasoconstrictor.


Synonymsstress, tenseness


Broader (hypernym)mental strain, nervous strain, strain


Narrower (hyponym)breaking point, yips


Domain categorypsychological science, psychology

2. tension (state) the physical condition of being stretched or strained


SamplesIt places great tension on the leg muscles.
He could feel the tenseness of her body.


Synonymstautness, tenseness, tensity


Broader (hypernym)condition, status


Narrower (hyponym)tone, tonicity, tonus

3. tension (state) a balance between and interplay of opposing elements or tendencies (especially in art or literature)


SamplesThere is a tension created between narrative time and movie time.
There is a tension between these approaches to understanding history.


Broader (hypernym)balance


Domain categoryart, artistic creation, artistic production, literature

4. tension (phenomenon) (physics) a stress that produces an elongation of an elastic physical body


SamplesThe direction of maximum tension moves asymptotically toward the direction of the shear.


Broader (hypernym)stress


Domain categorynatural philosophy, physics

5. tension (state) feelings of hostility that are not manifest


SamplesHe could sense her latent hostility to him.
The diplomats' first concern was to reduce international tensions.


Synonymslatent hostility


Broader (hypernym)antagonism, enmity, hostility

6. tension (act) the action of stretching something tight


SamplesTension holds the belt in the pulleys.


Broader (hypernym)stretching









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