to make (pastry, bread, etc.) short, as with butter or other fat.
Sports. choke (def. 8).
to become short or shorter.
(of odds) to decrease.
- short·en·er, noun
- o·ver·short·en, verb
- pre·short·en, verb (used with object)
- re·short·en, verb
- un·der·short·en, verb (used with object)
- un·short·en, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use shorten in a sentence
The second shortened the amount of time laid-off employees have to decide whether they want to come back.Morning Report: A Questionable Stat That’s Guiding Reopening | Voice of San Diego | September 9, 2020 | Voice of San Diego
Advertisers followed through on their plans to negotiate options to cancel a higher amount of their committed ad dollars and to shorten the deadlines for when cancelation requests need to be submitted before a quarter begins.‘There wasn’t a huge shift’: TV upfront market did not undergo expected overhaul this year | Tim Peterson | September 9, 2020 | Digiday
The tools Cleveland uses are meant in part to shorten the throwing motion.Cleveland’s League-Leading Rotation Relies On Homegrown Talent … From A Single Draft | Travis Sawchik | August 25, 2020 | FiveThirtyEight
Response times shortened vastly as Mayo Clinic and these partners focused on an immediate shared goal.COVID-19 has spurred rapid transformation in health care. Let’s make sure it stays that way | jakemeth | August 20, 2020 | Fortune
The 20th amendment was ratified to shorten the period between the presidential election in November and the inauguration, which had been in March.Trump Can’t Postpone The Election, But He Can Delegitimize The Results. | Sarah Frostenson (email@example.com) | July 30, 2020 | FiveThirtyEight
“In some cases, it has taken 15 days to report the deaths and circumstances, which I would like to shorten to 48 hours,” she said.
We have to shorten the distance between inevitable and inconceivable.Square Deal, New Deal, and Now, From Hillary Clinton, a “Fair Shot” | Eleanor Clift | September 19, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Just like nobody is going to tell David O. Russell to shorten American Hustle (138 minutes).
A new study says living in the South will shorten your life.Study Proves Southern States Have Lowest Life Expectancy | Eliza Shapiro | July 20, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
We have to overturn Citizens United and shorten the campaign season.David Stockman on ‘The Great Deformation’ and Our Economic Doom | Daniel Gross | April 1, 2013 | THE DAILY BEAST
The law still branded as conspiracy any united attempt of workingmen to raise wages or to shorten the hours of work.The Unsolved Riddle of Social Justice | Stephen Leacock
If your neighbor seems disposed to shorten the time by conversing, do not be too hasty in checking him.The Ladies' Book of Etiquette, and Manual of Politeness | Florence Hartley
In spite, however, of the strong wind, neither the smugglers nor those on board the cruiser appeared inclined to shorten sail.Digby Heathcote | W.H.G. Kingston
On the 15th of May Mr. Tennyson submitted a motion for leave to introduce a bill to shorten the duration of parliaments.The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. | E. Farr and E. H. Nolan
The committee decided to run up signal to shorten course and conclude at the first round.Yachting Vol. 2 | Various.
British Dictionary definitions for shorten
to make or become short or shorter
(tr) nautical to reduce the area of (sail)
(tr) to make (pastry, bread, etc) short, by adding butter or another fat
gambling to cause (the odds) to lessen or (of odds) to become less
- shortener, 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