tight


tight
tight 1 Tight, taut, tense are comparable chiefly in their basic senses in which they mean drawn or stretched to the point where there is no looseness or slackness.
Tight implies a drawing around or about something in a way that constricts or binds it or a drawing of the edges of something firmly together
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a tight belt

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a tight coat

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Tom has eaten . . . till his little skin is as tight as a drum— Hughes

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When applied to a structure, tight more often suggests a drawing together of all parts so that nothing can enter or escape
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a tightly built house

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if the granary be not tight, the grain will leak out almost as fast as it is shoveled in— Grandgent

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When applied to a situation, it suggests that those involved in it are cornered or squeezed unmercifully
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those who take refuge in gaps find themselves in a tight place when the gaps begin to close— Inge

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a genius for fast talking in tight situations —and this was the tightest and most precarious of his stormy life— Shirer

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When the emphasis is upon pulling or stretching a cord, a rope, or a fabric to the point where it can be stretched no more without breaking or without putting undue strain upon its supports, tight is often used but taut is the more explicit word and therefore the more appropriate; thus, a tight cord may be one which ties up a bundle closely and firmly or is stretched to the limit between two points but a taut cord is one which is tight only in the second of these senses
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taut as a drumhead

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he is taut as one of the hawsers of his own boat— Brooks

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her sails are loose, her tackles hanging, waiting men to seize and haul them tautLowell

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In other than nautical or mechanical use, taut often carries a suggestion of strain, especially of nervous strain
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in appearance and manner, she was formidable and astringent, with hands that seemed forever tautHervey

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so frightened by his driving that she couldn't enjoy the night .... tense, taut, and curdling up inside— Farrell

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When there is an implication of tightness or tautness that involves severe physical or, more often, nervous strain or that manifests itself in signs of such strain, tense may be preferred
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a cat crouched for a spring, with muscles tense

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help him to unbend his too tense thought— Arnold

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just as a bicycle chain may be too tight, so may one's carefulness and conscientiousness be so tense as to hinder the running of one's mind— James

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the rat was crouching, very tense, sensing extreme danger, but not yet frightened— Dahl

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Analogous words: strict, stringent (see RIGID): *close, compact: constricted, contracted, compressed, condensed, shrunken (see CONTRACT vb): snug, shipshape (see NEAT)
Antonyms: loose
2 also

New Dictionary of Synonyms. 2014.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • tight — [tīt] adj. [ME, altered (prob. infl. by toght: see TAUT) < thight < OE thight, strong, akin to ON thēttr, Ger dicht, tight, thick < IE base * tenk , to thicken, congeal > MIr tēcht, coagulated] 1. Obs. dense 2. so close or compact in… …   English World dictionary

  • Tight — Tight, a. [Compar. {Tighter} (t[imac]t [ e]r); superl. {Tightest}.] [OE. tight, thiht; probably of Scand. origin; cf. Icel. [thorn][=e]ttr, Dan. t[ae]t, Sw. t[ a]t: akin to D. & G. dicht thick, tight, and perhaps to E. thee to thrive, or to thick …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • tight — tight; tight·en; tight·en·er; tight·ish; tight·ly; tight·ness; un·tight; air·tight·ness; gas·tight·ness; oil·tight·ness; up·tight·ness; wa·ter·tight·ness; weath·er·tight·ness; …   English syllables

  • tight — tight, tightly Tight is used as an adverb in combination with a number of verbs, primarily in commands or instructions: hold tight, sit tight, sleep tight. It also occurs as the first element in a few compound adjectives, e.g. tight fisted, tight …   Modern English usage

  • tight — (adj.) mid 15c., dense, close, compact, from M.E. thight, from O.N. þettr watertight, close in texture, solid, from P.Gmc. *thenkhtuz (Cf. second element in O.E. meteþiht stout from eating; M.H.G. dihte dense, thick, Ger. dicht dense, tight,… …   Etymology dictionary

  • tight — ► ADJECTIVE 1) fixed, closed, or fastened firmly. 2) (of clothes) close fitting. 3) well sealed against something such as water or air. 4) (of a rope, fabric, or surface) stretched so as to leave no slack. 5) (of an area or space) allowing little …   English terms dictionary

  • Tight — Tight …   Википедия

  • Tight A$ — Song by John Lennon from the album Mind Games Released 16 November 1973 Recorded July–August 1973 Genre Rock …   Wikipedia

  • tight — [adj1] close, snug bound, clasped, closefitting, compact, constricted, contracted, cramped, crowded, dense, drawn, enduring, established, fast, firm, fixed, hidebound, inflexible, invulnerable, narrow, quick, rigid, secure, set, skintight, solid …   New thesaurus

  • tight´en|er — tight|en «TY tuhn», transitive verb. to make tight or tighter: »He tightened his belt. –v.i. to become tight or tighter: »The rope tightened as I pulled on it. –tight´en|er, noun …   Useful english dictionary


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