I UK [stretʃ] / US verb
Word forms "stretch":
present tense I/you/we/they stretch he/she/it stretches present participle stretching past tense stretched past participle stretched
1) [transitive] to pull something to make it longer or wider

I'll have to get these shoes stretched.

a) [intransitive] to become longer or wider by pulling

Her new knitted dress had stretched.

b) [intransitive] if a material such as cloth stretches, it becomes wider or longer when you pull it, and returns to its original shape and size when you stop pulling it

When you're pregnant it helps to wear fabrics that stretch as you grow.

2) [transitive] to pull something so that it becomes smooth, straight, and tight

a folding chair made of white canvas stretched on a metal frame

The little birds are caught in nets stretched between the trees.

a) [intransitive/transitive] to make your arms, legs, or body as straight as possible so that your muscles become long and tight

I leaned back in the chair and stretched.

This exercise strengthens the lower back and stretches the hamstrings.

b) stretch or stretch out
[transitive] to move an arm or a leg away from your body in order to reach something

He stretched his hand towards her.

a) [intransitive] to continue for a particular distance
stretch into/from/to/for/across:

The empire stretched all the way from Scotland to the Pyrenees.

The beach stretches for miles in each direction.

Old grey houses stretched into the distance.

stretch as far as the eye can see:

The traffic stretched as far as the eye could see.

b) to continue for a particular period of time
stretch to/into/over/beyond/back:

Paul's initial two months' work experience ultimately stretched to five.

Negotiations had now stretched into a twelfth day.

They had an unbeaten record stretching back to 1995.

5) [intransitive, usually in negatives] to have enough money to pay for something
stretch to:

I don't really think my salary will stretch to a designer suit.

6) [transitive] to use all the money, supplies, or time available

At best, police resources are stretched.

stretch something to the limit:

Medical services were stretched to the limit.

7) [transitive] to make someone use all their intelligence or ability, especially in a way that is interesting or enjoyable

I don't think his job really stretches him sufficiently.

8) [transitive] to no longer be reasonable
stretch (someone's) credulity/patience etc:

Foreman's book has a plot that stretches credulity to the utmost.

9) [transitive] to allow something that is usually not allowed because of a special situation

We might be prepared to stretch the rules a little in this instance.

stretch a point (= allow something that is not usually allowed):

Couldn't you stretch a point for a friend?

Phrasal verbs:
II UK [stretʃ] / US noun
Word forms "stretch":
singular stretch plural stretches
1) [countable] a movement or exercise in which you make a part of your body as straight as possible so that your muscles become long and tight

First, let's do some warm-up stretches.

2) [uncountable] the ability of a material or piece of clothing to become wider or longer when you pull it, and return to its original shape and size when you stop pulling it

a fabric that will keep its stretch indefinitely

a) [countable] a continuous period of time
stretch of:

You can't learn it all in such a short stretch of time.

at a stretch (= continuously):

He'll surf the Internet for anything up to six hours at a stretch.

b) [usually singular] informal a period of time spent in prison
do a stretch (for something):

He's doing a 15-year stretch in Pentonville for armed robbery.

a) [countable] an area of land or water
stretch of:

The village lay across a narrow stretch of water.

a deserted stretch of road

b) [usually singular] the straight last part of the track in a race
the final/finishing/home stretch:

The horses entered the final stretch shoulder to shoulder.

not by any/by no stretch of the imagination — used for saying that you think something cannot be true or possible no matter how hard you try to imagine it

It's not a great work of cinema by any stretch of the imagination.

III UK [stretʃ] / US adjective
stretch cloth or clothing becomes wider or longer when you pull it and returns to its original shape and size when you stop pulling it

stretch fabric/lace/velvet

stretch jeans

English dictionary. 2014.

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Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Stretch — Stretch, n. 1. Act of stretching, or state of being stretched; reach; effort; struggle; strain; as, a stretch of the limbs; a stretch of the imagination. [1913 Webster] By stretch of arms the distant shore to gain. Dryden. [1913 Webster] Those… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Stretch — can refer to: *Stretching is a form of exercise or a pre exercise discipline, sometimes called Warming up *Stretch ceiling, a type of ceiling made from polymer. *Stretch ratio in the mechanics of materials *Stretched tuning of certain string… …   Wikipedia

  • stretch — ► VERB 1) (of something soft or elastic) be made or be able to be made longer or wider without tearing or breaking. 2) pull (something) tightly from one point to another. 3) extend one s body or a part of one s body to its full length. 4) last… …   English terms dictionary

  • stretch — [strech] vt. [ME strecchen < OE streccan, akin to Ger strecken < IE * sterg < base * (s)ter , to be stiff, rigid > STARE] 1. to hold out or reach out; extend [to stretch out a helping hand] 2. to cause (the body or limbs) to reach out …   English World dictionary

  • Stretch — Stretch, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Stretched}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Stretching}.] [OE. strecchen, AS. streccan; akin to D. strekken, G. strecken, OHG. strecchen, Sw. str[ a]cka, Dan. str[ae]kke; cf. AS. str[ae]ck, strec, strong, violent, G. strack… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Stretch — 〈[ strɛ̣tʃ] m.; ; unz.〉 elastische Wirkware (BaumwollStretch, NylonStretch) [zu engl. stretch „dehnen“ <aengl. steccan; verwandt mit strecken] * * * Stretch [strɛt̮ʃ], der; [e]s, es [ strɛt̮ʃɪs] [zu engl. to stretch = dehnen]: sehr elastisches …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Stretch — (engl. für „Strecke“, „Zeitraum“ aber auch „Ausdehnung“) steht für: Stretch (Unternehmen), ein US amerikanischer Halbleiterhersteller mit Niederlassungen in Japan und Deutschland Stretch (Band), eine britische Bluesrock Band, 1973 78 Ein… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Stretch — Stretch, v. i. 1. To be extended; to be drawn out in length or in breadth, or both; to spread; to reach; as, the iron road stretches across the continent; the lake stretches over fifty square miles. [1913 Webster] As far as stretcheth any ground …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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