Pronunciation: (strān), [key]
1. to draw tight or taut, esp. to the utmost tension; stretch to the full: to strain a rope.
2. to exert to the utmost: to strain one's ears to catch a sound.
3. to impair, injure, or weaken (a muscle, tendon, etc.) by stretching or overexertion.
4. to cause mechanical deformation in (a body or structure) as the result of stress.
5. to stretch beyond the proper point or limit: to strain the meaning of a word.
6. to make excessive demands upon: to strain one's luck; to strain one's resources.
7. to pour (liquid containing solid matter) through a filter, sieve, or the like in order to hold back the denser solid constituents: to strain gravy.
8. to draw off (clear or pure liquid) by means of a filter or sieve: to strain the water from spinach; to strain broth.
9. to hold back (solid particles) from liquid matter by means of a filter or sieve: to strain seeds from orange juice; to strain rice.
10. to clasp tightly in the arms, the hand, etc.: The mother strained her child close to her breast.
11. constrain, as to a course of action.

1. to pull forcibly: a dog straining at a leash.
2. to stretch one's muscles, nerves, etc., to the utmost.
3. to make violent physical efforts; strive hard.
4. to resist forcefully; balk: to strain at accepting an unpleasant fact.
5. to be subjected to tension or stress; suffer strain.
6. to filter, percolate, or ooze.
7. to trickle or flow: Sap strained from the bark.

1. any force or pressure tending to alter shape, cause a fracture, etc.
2. strong muscular or physical effort.
3. great or excessive effort or striving after some goal, object, or effect.
4. an injury to a muscle, tendon, etc., due to excessive tension or use; sprain.
5. Mech., Physics.deformation of a body or structure as a result of an applied force.
6. condition of being strained or stretched.
7. a task, goal, or effect accomplished only with great effort: Housecleaning is a real strain.
8. severe, trying, or fatiguing pressure or exertion; taxing onus: the strain of hard work.
9. a severe demand on or test of resources, feelings, a person, etc.: a strain on one's hospitality.
10. a flow or burst of language, eloquence, etc.: the lofty strain of Cicero.
11. Often, strains. a passage of melody, music, or songs as rendered or heard: the strains of the nightingale.
12. Music.a section of a piece of music, more or less complete in itself.
13. a passage or piece of poetry.
14. the tone, style, or spirit of an utterance, writing, etc.: a humorous strain.
15. a particular degree, height, or pitch attained: a strain of courageous enthusiasm.


Pronunciation: (strān), [key]
1. the body of descendants of a common ancestor, as a family or stock.
2. any of the different lines of ancestry united in a family or an individual.
3. a group of plants distinguished from other plants of the variety to which it belongs by some intrinsic quality, such as a tendency to yield heavily; race.
4. an artificial variety of a species of domestic animal or cultivated plant.
5. a variety, esp. of microorganisms.
6. ancestry or descent.
7. hereditary or natural character, tendency, or trait: a strain of insanity in a family.
8. a streak or trace.
9. a kind or sort.
10. Obs.procreation.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

straight whiskeystrained
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