[ skweez ]
See synonyms for: squeezesqueezedsqueezing on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object),squeezed, squeez·ing.
  1. to press forcibly together; compress.

  2. to apply pressure to in order to extract juice, sap, or the like: The tool is used to squeeze an orange.

  1. to force out, extract, or procure by pressure: For this cocktail, first squeeze the juice from a pineapple.

  2. to thrust forcibly; force by pressure; cram: I squeezed three suits into a small suitcase and now I'm afraid to unpack.

  3. to fit into a small or crowded space or timespan: The doctor will try to squeeze you in between appointments.

  4. to enclose (another person's hand, arm, etc.) in one's hand and apply pressure as a token of affection, friendship, sympathy, or the like: His father squeezed his hand and wished him luck.

  5. to give (someone) a hug.

  6. to threaten, intimidate, harass, or oppress (a person) in order to obtain a favor, money, or an advantageous attitude or action.

  7. to cause financial hardship to: Manufacturers squeezed by high tariffs have stopped offering international shipping.

  8. to obtain a facsimile impression of.

  9. to cause to merge, as two or more lines of traffic into fewer lanes.

  10. Baseball.

    • to enable (a runner on third base) to score on a squeeze play (often followed by in): He squeezed him in with a perfect bunt.

    • to score (a run) in this way (often followed by in): The Dodgers squeezed in a run in the eighth inning.

  11. Bridge. to force (an opponent) to play a potentially winning card on a trick they cannot win.

verb (used without object),squeezed, squeez·ing.
  1. to exert a compressing force: She took his hand and squeezed hard.

  2. to force one's way through some narrow or crowded place (usually followed by through, in, out, etc.): It was so crowded we could barely squeeze through the passageway.

  1. to merge or come together.

  1. the act or fact of squeezing or the fact of being squeezed: It'll be a bit of a squeeze to get them all in the same taxi.

  2. a clasping of one's hand around another's hand, arm, etc., as a token of affection, friendship, sympathy, or the like.

  1. a hug or close embrace.

  2. a troubled financial condition, especially caused by a shortage or restriction, as of credit or funds.

  3. a small quantity or amount of anything obtained by squeezing: It just needs a squeeze of lemon juice.

  4. Slang. a sweetheart: his main squeeze.

  5. a facsimile impression of an inscription or the like, obtained by pressing some plastic substance over or around it.

  6. Bridge. a play or circumstance whereby an opponent is forced to waste or discard a potentially winning card.

  7. an act of threatening, intimidating, harassing, or oppressing a person or persons to obtain a favor, money, or an advantageous attitude or action: gangsters putting the squeeze on small businesses.

  8. money or a favor obtained in such a way.

Origin of squeeze

First recorded in 1590–1600; perhaps variant of obsolete squize (Old English cwȳsan ) “to squeeze,” with initial s by false division of words in a closely joined phrase

Other words for squeeze

Other words from squeeze

  • squeez·er, noun
  • squeez·ing·ly, adverb
  • in·ter·squeeze, verb (used with object), in·ter·squeezed, in·ter·squeez·ing.
  • un·squeezed, adjective

Words Nearby squeeze

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

How to use squeeze in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for squeeze


/ (skwiːz) /

verb(mainly tr)
  1. to grip or press firmly, esp so as to crush or distort; compress

  2. to crush or press (something) so as to extract (a liquid): to squeeze the juice from an orange; to squeeze an orange

  1. to apply gentle pressure to, as in affection or reassurance: he squeezed her hand

  2. to push or force in a confined space: to squeeze six lettuces into one box; to squeeze through a crowd

  3. to hug closely

  4. to oppress with exacting demands, such as excessive taxes

  5. to exert pressure on (someone) in order to extort (something): to squeeze money out of a victim by blackmail

  6. (intr) to yield under pressure

  7. to make an impression of (a coin, etc) in a soft substance

  8. bridge whist to lead a card that forces (opponents) to discard potentially winning cards

  1. the act or an instance of squeezing or of being squeezed

  2. a hug or handclasp

  1. a crush of people in a confined space

  2. mainly British a condition of restricted credit imposed by a government to counteract price inflation

  3. an impression, esp of a coin, etc, made in a soft substance

  4. an amount extracted by squeezing: add a squeeze of lemon juice

  5. commerce any action taken by a trader or traders on a market that forces buyers to make purchases and prices to rise

  6. informal pressure brought to bear in order to extort something (esp in the phrase put the squeeze on)

  7. Also called: squeeze play bridge whist a manoeuvre that forces opponents to discard potentially winning cards

  8. informal a person with whom one is having a romantic relationship

Origin of squeeze

C16: from Middle English queysen to press, from Old English cwӯsan

Derived forms of squeeze

  • squeezable, adjective
  • squeezer, 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

Other Idioms and Phrases with squeeze


In addition to the idioms beginning with squeeze

  • squeeze off
  • squeeze play
  • squeeze through

also see:

  • main squeeze
  • put the arm (squeeze) on
  • tight squeeze

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.