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WordReference Random House Learner's Dictionary of American English © 2015
stretch /strɛtʃ/USA pronunciation
[countable] an act or instance of stretching; the state of being stretched.
[uncountable] ability to be stretched;
- to spread out fully;
straighten (the body, etc.) completely: [~ + object]She stretched herself out on the ground.[no object]He yawned and stretched.
- to (cause to) extend or spread from one place to another: [~ + object]The crew stretched a rope across the road.[no object]The forest stretches for miles.
- [no object] to extend in time:His memory stretches back to his early childhood.
- to (cause to) be drawn tight or taut, without breaking or snapping: [~ + object]to stretch the strings of a violin.[no object]Will this nylon stretch?
- to draw out or extend too much: [~ + object]The jacket was stretched at the elbows.[no object]The jacket stretched at the stomach.
- [~ + object] to extend or force (something) or make (something) serve beyond its normal or proper limits; strain:to stretch the facts.
- [~ + object] to exert (oneself ) to the utmost:students who stretch themselves to achieve their best.
elasticityelasticity:These socks have lost their stretch.
[countable] a continuous length:a stretch of meadow.
Sport[countable] the last part of a racetrack:down the stretch.
[countable] an amount of, or extent in, time:gone for a stretch of ten years.
[countable] a term of imprisonment:a ten-year stretch in prison.
adj. [before a noun]
Textiles(of yarn) having an ability to be easily stretched.
Textilesmade from such yarn:stretch denim.
Transportlonger than standard:stretch limousines.
Collins Concise English Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers::
stretch /strɛtʃ/ vb
- to draw out or extend or be drawn out or extended in length, area, etc
- to extend or be extended to an undue degree, esp so as to distort or lengthen permanently
- to extend (the limbs, body, etc)
- (transitive) to reach or suspend (a rope, etc) from one place to another
- (transitive) to draw tight; tighten
- often followed by out, forward, etc: to reach or hold (out); extend
- (intransitive) usually followed by over: to extend in time: the course stretched over three months
- (intr; followed by for, over, etc) (of a region, etc) to extend in length or area
- (intransitive) (esp of a garment) to be capable of expanding, as to a larger size: socks that will stretch
- (transitive) to put a great strain upon or extend to the limit
- to injure (a muscle, tendon, ligament, etc) by means of a strain or sprain
- (transitive) often followed by out: to make do with (limited resources): to stretch one's budget
- (transitive) informal to expand or elaborate (a story, etc) beyond what is credible or acceptable
- (tr; often passive) to extend, as to the limit of one's abilities or talents
- archaic or slang to hang or be hanged by the neck
- stretch a point ⇒ to make a concession or exception not usually made
- to exaggerate
- stretch one's legs ⇒ to take a walk, esp after a period of inactivity
Etymology: Old English streccan; related to Old Frisian strekka, Old High German strecken; see straight, strakeˈstretchable adj ˌstretchaˈbility n
- the act of stretching or state of being stretched
- a large or continuous expanse or distance: a stretch of water
- extent in time, length, area, etc
- capacity for being stretched, as in some garments
- (as modifier): stretch pants
- the section or sections of a racecourse that are straight, esp the final straight section leading to the finishing line
- slang a term of imprisonment
- at a stretch ⇒ chiefly Brit with some difficulty; by making a special effort
- if really necessary or in extreme circumstances
- at one time