tense
Tight, rigid, or strained; characterized by anxiety and psychological strain. [L. tensus, pp. of tendo, to stretch]

* * *

tense 'ten(t)s adj, tens·er; tens·est
1) stretched tight: made taut or rigid <the skeletal musculature involuntarily becomes \tense (H. G. Armstrong)>
2) feeling or showing nervous tension <was \tense and irritable>
tense·ness n
tense vb, tensed; tens·ing vt to make tense <\tense a muscle> vi to become tense

* * *

(tens) drawn tight; rigid.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Tense — Tense, a. [L. tensus, p. p. of tendere to stretch. See {Tend} to move, and cf. {Toise}.] Stretched tightly; strained to stiffness; rigid; not lax; as, a tense fiber. [1913 Webster] The temples were sunk, her forehead was tense, and a fatal… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • tense — is the location in time of the state or action expressed by a verb. English verbs properly have only two tenses, the present (I stay) and past (I stayed). The future is formed with shall or will (I shall / will stay: see shall and will) or (to… …   Modern English usage

  • Tense — Tense, n. [OF. tens, properly, time, F. temps time, tense. See {Temporal} of time, and cf. {Thing}.] (Gram.) One of the forms which a verb takes by inflection or by adding auxiliary words, so as to indicate the time of the action or event… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Tense — may refer to: *Grammatical tense, the inflection of a verb to indicate whether past, present, or future time is intended *Tenseness, a phonological quality frequently associated with vowels and occasionally with consonants *Tense, a state of… …   Wikipedia

  • tense — Ⅰ. tense [1] ► ADJECTIVE 1) stretched tight or rigid. 2) feeling, causing, or showing anxiety and nervousness. ► VERB ▪ make or become tense. DERIVATIVES tensely adverb tenseness noun …   English terms dictionary

  • tense — tense1 [tens] adj. tenser, tensest [L tensus, pp. of tendere, to stretch < IE * tend < base * ten , to stretch > THIN] 1. stretched tight; strained; taut 2. feeling, showing, or causing mental strain; anxious 3. Phonet. articulated with… …   English World dictionary

  • tense — [adj1] tight, stretched close, firm, rigid, stiff, strained, taut; concepts 485,604 Ant. limp, limpid, loose, relaxed, slack tense [adj2] under stress, pressure agitated, anxious, apprehensive, beside oneself*, bundle of nerves*, choked, clutched …   New thesaurus

  • tense — index rigid Burton s Legal Thesaurus. William C. Burton. 2006 …   Law dictionary

  • tense — adj 1 *tight, taut Analogous words: strained (see corresponding noun at STRAIN): nervous, unquiet, uneasy, jittery (see IMPATIENT) Antonyms: slack 2 *stiff, rigid, inflexible, stark, wooden Analogous words: tough, tenacious, stout (see STRONG):… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • tense — I UK [tens] / US adjective Word forms tense : adjective tense comparative tenser superlative tensest * 1) a) making you feel nervous and not relaxed, usually because you are worried about what is going to happen a tense situation/atmosphere a… …   English dictionary

  • tense — [[t]te̱ns[/t]] tenses, tensing, tensed, tenser, tensest 1) ADJ GRADED A tense situation or period of time is one that makes people anxious, because they do not know what is going to happen next. This gesture of goodwill did little to improve the… …   English dictionary

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