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See more synonyms for straiten on Thesaurus.com
verb (used with object)
  1. to put into difficulties, especially financial ones: His obligations had straitened him.
  2. to restrict in range, extent, amount, pecuniary means, etc: Poverty straitens one's way of living.
  3. Archaic.
    1. to make narrow.
    2. to confine within narrow limits.
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Origin of straiten

First recorded in 1515–25; strait + -en1
Related formsun·strait·ened, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

fluster, corner, confuse, perplex, restrict, hinder, constrain, confine, contract

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British Dictionary definitions for straitened


  1. (tr; usually passive) to embarrass or distress, esp financially
  2. (tr) to limit, confine, or restrict
  3. archaic to make or become narrow
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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

Word Origin and History for straitened


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

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper