[ oh-ver-struhng ]
See synonyms for overstrung on Thesaurus.com
  1. overly tense or sensitive; strained; on edge: Their nerves were badly overstrung.

  2. Archery. (of a bow) strung too tightly.

Origin of overstrung

First recorded in 1800–10; over- + strung

Words Nearby overstrung

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use overstrung in a sentence

  • If our nerves are overstrung, or our tempers tried, so far from endeavouring to conceal the fact we make them feel it.

  • The interruption checked his words, but could not check the red fury that was surging through Slaughter's overstrung brain.

    Colonial Born | G. Firth Scott
  • To her overstrung nerves each darker shadow held an evil menace.

    A German Pompadour | Marie Hay
  • The whole world seemed a great musical instrument, overstrung and giving out previously unknown harmonies and inharmonies.

    Robin | Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • It was at this moment more than ever true that her light being was overstrung and that her light head whirled too fast.

    Robin | Frances Hodgson Burnett

British Dictionary definitions for overstrung


/ (ˌəʊvəˈstrʌŋ) /

  1. too highly strung; tense

  2. (of a piano) having two sets of strings crossing each other at an oblique angle

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