Definitions of contraction

  1. the process or result of becoming smaller or pressed together; " the contraction of a gas on cooling"
  2. ( physiology) a shortening or tensing of a part or organ ( especially of a muscle or muscle fiber)
  3. a word formed from two or more words by omitting or combining some sounds; "` won't' is a contraction of ` will not'"; "` o'clock' is a contraction of ` of the clock'"
  4. the act of decreasing ( something) in size or volume or quantity or scope
  5. The act or process of contracting, shortening, or shrinking; the state of being contracted; as, contraction of the heart, of the pupil of the eye, or of a tendion; the contraction produced by cold.
  6. The process of shortening an operation.
  7. The act of incurring or becoming subject to, as liabilities, obligation, debts, etc.; the process of becoming subject to; as, the contraction of a disease.
  8. Something contracted or abbreviated, as a word or phrase; -- as, plenipo for plenipotentiary; crim. con. for criminal conversation, etc.
  9. The shortening of a word, or of two words, by the omission of a letter or letters, or by reducing two or more vowels or syllables to one; as, ne'er for never; can't for can not; don't for do not; it's for it is.
  10. A marriage contract.
  11. The act of drawing together; shrinkage; act of acquiring; the shortening of a word, or two words, by the cutting out of a letter or letters, as can't for cannot.
  12. Act of contracting: a word shortened by rejecting a part of it.
  13. Shrinking; shortening; thing contracted.
  14. The act of contracting, or the state of being contracted.
  15. That which is contracted.
  16. The act of contracting; the state of being contracted; abbreviation; the shortening of a word by the omission of a letter or syllable.

Usage examples for contraction

  1. There was a wistful note in the question, and around her gentle blue eyes appeared a group of little lines, brought out by the nervous contraction of her forehead. – Virginia by Ellen Glasgow
  2. This young lady had restless brilliant eyes, and a contraction about the forehead which gave one the idea of a creature suffering perpetual headache. – The Complete Project Gutenberg Works of George Meredith by George Meredith
  3. He possessed a moderately prosperous business until a long illness came to his wife, and when the depression which followed the reaction from the war and the contraction of the currency fell upon the North, he found he had little left, and so sought a new field. – The Comstock Club by Charles Carroll Goodwin
  4. This gun consists of an inner tube, encircled and compressed by a long 'jacket' or cylinder, which is shrunk around the breech portion with the initial tension due to contraction in cooling. – The-Romance-of-Industry-and-Invention by Cochrane, Robert
  5. This alternate expansion and contraction, in time, cracks the surfaces of the rocks. – Dry-Farming by John A. Widtsoe
  6. The woods, the vegetable mould, and the soil beneath, protect the rocks they cover from the direct action of heat and cold, and from the expansion and contraction which accompany them. – The Earth as Modified by Human Action by George P. Marsh
  7. Then, as soon as the muscle ceases its contraction, the blood flows faster from the previous accumulation. – The American Woman's Home by Catherine E. Beecher and Harriet Beecher Stowe
  8. And this is also the best way to bring about the contraction of the city. – Down-with-the-Cities by Nakashima, Tadashi
  9. Roger does not answer, he does not even look up, but by a restless movement that he makes in his chair, by a tiny contraction of the brows, I see that my shot has told. – Nancy A Novel by Rhoda Broughton
  10. Even then the muscular contraction of his claws might have given you fits; but he made a bad shot- only hit you with his shoulder and knocked you flying. – Harley Greenoak's Charge by Bertram Mitford
  11. When therefore, as she grew older, her parents in turn announced before her that she had grown shockingly dull, it was not from any real contraction of her little stream of life. – What Maisie Knew by Henry James
  12. There was a slight contraction of the lip accompanying this remark that Tom by no means fancied. – M. or N. "Similia similibus curantur." by G.J. Whyte-Melville
  13. Again I saw that contraction of her eyes, but she never winced or changed her tone. – The Betrayal by E. Phillips Oppenheim
  14. Perhaps it would not yet be safe to say that all forms of protoplasm are affected by the direct action of electric shocks; and yet the number of cases in which the contraction of protoplasm is shown to be affected by this agency increases every day. – Autobiography and Selected Essays by Thomas Henry Huxley