Definitions of tension

  1. feelings of hostility that are not manifest; " he could sense her latent hostility to him"; " the diplomats' first concern was to reduce international tensions"
  2. ( psychology) a state of mental or emotional strain or suspense; " he suffered from fatigue and emotional tension"; " stress is a vasoconstrictor"
  3. ( physics) a stress that produces an elongation of an elastic physical body; " the direction of maximum tension moves asymptotically toward the direction of the shear"
  4. a balance between and interplay of opposing elements or tendencies ( especially in art or literature); " there is a tension created between narrative time and movie time"; " there is a tension between these approaches to understanding history"
  5. The pressure or tension of a confined body of vapor. The pressure of a given saturated vapor is a function of the temperature only, and may be measured by introducing a small quantity of the substance into a barometer and noting the depression of the column of mercury.
  6. The pressure or of a confined body of vapor.
  7. The act of stretching or straining; the state of being stretched or strained; mental strain; strong excitement of feeling; strained relations; in machinery, a device to loosen or tighten the thread on a sewing machine; the condition or stress due to pulling.
  8. Act of stretching: state of being stretched or strained: strain: effort.
  9. Act of stretching; state of being stretched; strain.
  10. The act of stretching; stress; strain.
  11. The act of stretching or straining; the state of being strained; intense effort; intensity.
  12. The act of stretching or straining; state of being stretched to stiffness; the strain in the direction of the length which a body can bear.
  13. The act of stretching or straining; the state of being stretched or strained to stiffness; the state of being bent strained; as, the tension of the muscles, tension of the larynx.
  14. The degree of stretching to which a wire, cord, piece of timber, or the like, is strained by drawing it in the direction of its length; strain.
  15. A device for checking the delivery of the thread in a sewing machine, so as to give the stitch the required degree of tightness.
  16. Expansive force; the force with which the particles of a body, as a gas, tend to recede from each other and occupy a larger space; elastic force; elasticity; as, the tension of vapor; the tension of air.
  17. The quality in consequence of which an electric charge tends to discharge itself, as into the air by a spark, or to pass from a body of greater to one of less electrical potential. It varies as the quantity of electricity upon a given area.