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[streyt-n] /ˈstreɪt n/
verb (used with object)
to put into difficulties, especially financial ones:
His obligations had straitened him.
to restrict in range, extent, amount, pecuniary means, etc:
Poverty straitens one's way of living.
  1. to make narrow.
  2. to confine within narrow limits.
Origin of straiten
First recorded in 1515-25; strait + -en1
Related forms
unstraitened, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for straitened
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • A thousand pounds is a heavy venture for one so straitened as I am.

  • Can it be that the rarity of this virtue in England has to do with our living in a straitened island?

    Weighed and Wanting George MacDonald
  • His means were straitened, and he lived upon the contributions of his friends.

    Self-Help Samuel Smiles
  • We will not weary you by writing how straitened we have been.

    The Formation of Christendom, Volume VI

    Thomas W. (Thomas William) Allies
  • A straitened existence, sweet in spite of everything, now began for them.

    Doctor Pascal Emile Zola
  • It was true that his hotel pointed to the most straitened circumstances.

    The Moon and Sixpence W. Somerset Maugham
  • How would it sound, "I have an immersion to be immersed with, and how am I straitened?"

    Bertha and Her Baptism Nehemiah Adams
  • Neglected and idle, he did not grumble; straitened and poor, he did not mope.

  • His word to us all is, 'Ye are not straitened in Me, ye are straitened in yourselves.'

    Expositions of Holy Scripture

    Alexander Maclaren
British Dictionary definitions for straitened


(transitive; usually passive) to embarrass or distress, esp financially
(transitive) to limit, confine, or restrict
(archaic) to make or become narrow
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 straitened

c.1600, "too narrow;" 1716, "reduced to hardship;" see strait (n.). Phrase straitened circumstances recorded from 1766.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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