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Dictionary definition for: Tension

1. (n) feelings of hostility that are not manifest; "he could sense her latent hostility to him" "the diplomats" first concern was to reduce international tensions"

2. (n) (psychology) a state of mental or emotional strain or suspense; "he suffered from fatigue and emotional tension" "stress is a vasoconstrictor"

3. (n) the physical condition of being stretched or strained; "it places great tension on the leg muscles" "he could feel the tenseness of her body"

4. (n) a balance between and interplay of opposing elements or tendencies (especially in art or literature) "there is a tension created between narrative time and movie time" "there is a tension between these approaches to understanding history"

5. (n) (physics) a stress that produces an elongation of an elastic physical body; "the direction of maximum tension moves asymptotically toward the direction of the shear"

6. (n) the action of stretching something tight; "tension holds the belt in the pulleys"

WordNet 2.1 Copyright Princeton University. All rights reserved.