English

Definition of loosen verb from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

     

    loosen

     verb
    verb
    BrE BrE//ˈluːsn//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈluːsn//
     
    Verb Forms present simple I / you / we / they loosen
    BrE BrE//ˈluːsn//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈluːsn//
     
    he / she / it loosens
    BrE BrE//ˈluːsnz//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈluːsnz//
     
    past simple loosened
    BrE BrE//ˈluːsnd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈluːsnd//
     
    past participle loosened
    BrE BrE//ˈluːsnd//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈluːsnd//
     
    -ing form loosening
    BrE BrE//ˈluːsnɪŋ//
     
    ; NAmE NAmE//ˈluːsnɪŋ//
     
     
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  1. 1[transitive, intransitive] loosen (something) to make something less tight or firmly fixed; to become less tight or firmly fixed synonym slacken First loosen the nuts, then take off the wheel. The rope holding the boat loosened.
  2. 2[transitive] loosen something to make a piece of clothing, hair, etc. loose, when it has been tied or fastened She loosened her hair so that it fell over her shoulders.
  3. 3[transitive] loosen your hands, hold, etc. to hold somebody/something less tightly He loosened his grip and let her go. (figurative) The military regime has not loosened its hold on power.
  4. 4[transitive] loosen something to make something weaker or less controlled than before synonym relax The party has loosened its links with big business.
  5. opposite tighten
    Idioms
    loosen somebody’s tongue
     
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    to make somebody talk more freely than usual A bottle of wine had loosened Harry's tongue.
    Phrasal Verbsloosen uploosen up
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: loosen

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