9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[tahyt-n] /ˈtaɪt n/
verb (used with object), verb (used without object)
to make or become tight or tighter.
Origin of tighten
1720-30; tight + -en1
Related forms
tightener, noun
overtighten, verb
retighten, verb
self-tightening, adjective
untighten, verb (used with object)
secure, anchor, fasten. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for tighten
  • It is no surprise that they have been the first to tighten.
  • But if some countries tighten too soon, this could derail the global recovery.
  • When oil markets tighten, another set of problems emerges.
  • The regime tends to tighten the screws when it feels edgy.
  • tighten too soon or too much, and the recovery is in jeopardy.
  • Standards are likely to tighten further in the years ahead.
  • tighten too early and you get a relapse into recession.
  • Countries with bans already in place will tighten restrictions.
  • In particular, emerging markets will likely have to tighten monetary policy sooner than developed economies.
  • Higher yields will add to the pressure on them to tighten fiscal policy.
British Dictionary definitions for tighten


to make or become tight or tighter
tighten one's belt, to economize
Derived Forms
tightener, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for tighten

"to make tight," 1727; the earlier verb was simply tight, from Old English tyhtan, from the root of tight. Related: Tightened; tightening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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