Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “stiffen”

stiffen

verb uk   /ˈstɪf.ən/ us  

stiffen verb (FIRM)

[I] to become firm or more difficult to bend: Beat the cream until it begins to stiffen (= become firm). His body stiffened in fear.

stiffen verb (LESS RELAXED)

[I] to become less relaxed and more formal: She stiffened when her former husband walked into the room.

stiffen verb (MORE SEVERE)

[I or T] to become or make something stronger or more difficult: These events have stiffened our resolve to succeed. Penalties for selling illegal drugs have been stiffened. Stiffening competition in the market has led to a reduction in the company's profits this year.
(Definition of stiffen from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of stiffen?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

Definitions of “stiffen” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

give the green light to sth

to give permission for someone to do something or for something to happen

Word of the Day

Highly delighted, bitterly disappointed, ridiculously cheap: adverbs for emphasis.

by Liz Walter,
October 22, 2014
We often make adjectives stronger by putting an adverb in front of them. The most common ones are very and, for a stronger meaning, extremely: He was very pleased. The ship is extremely large. However, we don’t use very or extremely for adjectives that already have a strong meaning, for example fantastic,

Read More 

life tracking noun

October 20, 2014
the use of one or more devices or apps to monitor health, exercise, how time is spent, etc.

Read More