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Stretch Definition

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Other Stretch Definition

[n] the act of physically reaching or thrusting out
[n] extension to or beyond the ordinary limit; "running at full stretch"; "by no stretch of the imagination"; "beyond any stretch of his understanding"
[n] exercise designed to extend the limbs and muscles to their full extent
[n] (racing) a straightaway section of a racetrack
[n] the capacity for being stretched
[n] a large and unbroken expanse or distance; "a stretch of highway"; "a stretch of clear water"
[n] an unbroken period of time during which you do something; "there were stretches of boredom"; "he did a stretch in the federal penitentiary"
[adj] easily stretched; "stretch hosiery"
[v] extend one's limbs or muscles, or the entire body; "Stretch your legs!"; "Extend your right arm above your head"
[v] extend one's body or limbs; "Let's stretch for a minute--we've been sitting here for over 3 hours"
[v] increase in quantity or bulk by adding a cheaper substance; "stretch the soup by adding some more cream"; "extend the casserole with a little rice"
[v] become longer by being stretched and pulled; "The fabric stretches"
[v] make long or longer by pulling and stretching; "stretch the fabric"
[v] corrupt, debase, or make impure by adding a foreign or inferior substance; often by replacing valuable ingredients with inferior ones; "adulterate liquor"
[v] extend the scope or meaning of; often unduly; "Stretch the limits"; "stretch my patience"; "stretch the imagination"
[v] pull in opposite directions; "During the Inquisition, the torturers would stretch their victims on a rack"
[v] lie down comfortably; "To enjoy the picnic, we stretched out on the grass"
[v] extend or stretch out to a greater or the full length; "Unfold the newspaper"; "stretch out that piece of cloth"; "extend the TV antenna"
[v] occupy a large, elongated area; "The park stretched beneath the train line"


contract, shrink

Misc. Definitions

\Stretch\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Stretched}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Stretching}.] [OE. strecchen, AS. streccan; akin to D. strekken, G. strecken, OHG. strecchen, Sw. str["a]cka, Dan. str[ae]kke; cf. AS. str[ae]ck, strec, strong, violent, G. strack straight; of uncertain origin, perhaps akin to E. strong. Cf. {Straight}.]
1. To reach out; to extend; to put forth. And stretch forth his neck long and small. --Chaucer. I in conquest stretched mine arm. --Shak.
2. To draw out to the full length; to cause to extend in a straight line; as, to stretch a cord or rope.
3. To cause to extend in breadth; to spread; to expand; as, to stretch cloth; to stretch the wings.
4. To make tense; to tighten; to distend forcibly. The ox hath therefore stretched his yoke in vain. --Shak.
5. To draw or pull out to greater length; to strain; as, to stretch a tendon or muscle. Awake, my soul, stretch every nerve. --Doddridge.
6. To exaggerate; to extend too far; as, to stretch the truth; to stretch one's credit. They take up, one day, the most violent and stretched prerogative. --Burke.
\Stretch\, v. i.
1. To be extended; to be drawn out in length or in breadth, or both; to spread; to reach; as, the iron road stretches across the continent; the lake stretches over fifty square miles. As far as stretcheth any ground. --Gower.
2. To extend or spread one's self, or one's limbs; as, the lazy man yawns and stretches.
3. To be extended, or to bear extension, without breaking, as elastic or ductile substances. The inner membrane . . . because it would stretch and yield, remained umbroken. --Boyle.
4. To strain the truth; to exaggerate; as, a man apt to stretch in his report of facts. [Obs. or Colloq.]
5. (Naut.) To sail by the wind under press of canvas; as, the ship stretched to the eastward. --Ham. Nav. Encyc. {Stretch out}, an order to rowers to extend themselves forward in dipping the oar.
\Stretch\, n.
1. Act of stretching, or state of being stretched; reach; effort; struggle; strain; as, a stretch of the limbs; a stretch of the imagination. By stretch of arms the distant shore to gain. --Dryden. Those put a lawful authority upon the stretch, to the abuse of yower, under the color of prerogative. --L'Estrange.
2. A continuous line or surface; a continuous space of time; as, grassy stretches of land. A great stretch of cultivated country. --W. Black. But all of them left me a week at a stretch. --E. Eggleston.
3. The extent to which anything may be stretched. Quotations, in their utmost stretch, can signify no more than that Luther lay under severe agonies of mind. --Atterbury. This is the utmost stretch that nature can. --Granville.
4. (Naut.) The reach or extent of a vessel's progress on one tack; a tack or board.
5. Course; direction; as, the stretch of seams of coal. {To be on the stretch}, to be obliged to use one's utmost powers. {Home stretch}. See under {Home}, a.

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