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2017 Word of the Year

slacken

[slak-uh n] /ˈslæk ən/
verb (used with or without object)
1.
to make or become less active, vigorous, intense, etc.
2.
to make or become looser or less taut.
Origin of slacken
1570-1580
First recorded in 1570-80; slack1 + -en1
Related forms
unslackened, adjective
unslackening, adjective
Synonyms
1, 2. relax, loosen, slack, abate.
Antonyms
2. tighten, tense.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for slackened
Historical Examples
  • To the bewilderment of the Leopard Woman the pace of the safari now slackened.

    The Leopard Woman Stewart Edward White
  • But Philip slackened not his pace; he began to distance his pursuers.

    Night and Morning, Complete Edward Bulwer-Lytton
  • Stanley's jaw dropped, but it was surprise which slackened the muscles.

    Good Indian B. M. Bower
  • That moment Turkey slackened his pace, and burst into a fit of laughter.

    Ranald Bannerman's Boyhood George MacDonald
  • As soon as he felt himself under cover he slackened his pace.

  • But when she found herself alone in the midst of the crowd, she slackened her pace.

    L'Assommoir Emile Zola
  • Joe slackened the car's pace, and leaned his head round the corner.

    The Burning Spear John Galsworthy
  • It slackened at last, and the figure of the doctor reappeared on the wing.

    The Solar Magnet Sterner St. Paul Meek
  • But Wellington held the reins, and his grip never relaxed or slackened.

    The Snare Rafael Sabatini
  • I slackened speed somewhat and rode on, watching him sharply.

    The Suitors of Yvonne Raphael Sabatini
British Dictionary definitions for slackened

slacken

/ˈslækən/
verb (often foll by off)
1.
to make or become looser
2.
to make or become slower, less intense, etc
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 slackened

slacken

v.

early 15c., from slack (adj.) + -en (1). Related: Slackened; slackening.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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16
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