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English definition of “strain”

strain

verb [I or T] (PRESSURE)    /streɪn/
B2 to become stretched or to experience pressure , or to make something do or experience this: I've put on such a lot of weight recently - this dress is straining at the seams . I strained a muscle in my back playing squash . Don't watch TV in the dark - you'll strain your eyes ! [+ to infinitive] figurative I really had to strain (= try very hard) to reach those top notes .figurative I was straining (my ears ) (= listening hard) to hear what they were saying. → Compare restrainTight and tightening
(Definition of strain verb (PRESSURE) from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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