verb (frets, fretting, fretted)
- 1 [no object] Be constantly or visibly worried or anxious: she fretted about the cost of groceries [with clause]: I fretted that my fingers were so skinnyMore example sentences
- The neurotic quality that Brooks brings to his characters is well suited to Marlin, constantly fretting over Nemo's safety and youthful exuberance.
- An alarming new survey has found that almost one in four parents fret constantly about whether they have the ability to raise their children properly.
- Another focuses on an anxious woman who frets about how her partner's personality changes when he gets behind the wheel.
- 1.1 [with object] Cause (someone) worry or distress.More example sentences
- I doubt it'll change what I do, but it continues to fret me.
- Justin said in an encouraging voice ‘don't fret Mary, Rebecca will be safe I promise you that.’
- You break the rules of your people, invite danger upon yourself and fret your mother.
- 2 [with object] Gradually wear away (something) by rubbing or gnawing: the bay’s black waves fret the seafrontMore example sentences
- In all the caves they were surrounded by beautifully fluted and fretted columns whose pure white frosted surfaces shone out like beacons in the harsh magnesium light of their lanterns.
- It has a proper mixed-use urban centre that focuses on a park and stretches along a magnificent site between forested hills and the complex fretted geometry of the coast of the Pacific Ocean.
noun[in singular] chiefly British Back to top
- A state of anxiety or worry.More example sentences
- She also says that stars who had to return their borrowed designer duds did not have fret about removing sweat stains.
- 1 Art & Architecture A repeating ornamental design of interlaced vertical and horizontal lines, such as the Greek key pattern.More example sentences
- In France, reaction against the asymmetric filigree of late Rococo produced frames with architectural frets and interlaced ornament, suited to the Neoclassical interior.
verb (frets, fretting, fretted)[with object] (usually as adjective fretted) Back to top
- Decorate with fretwork: intricately carved and fretted balustradesMore example sentences
- Late medieval screens were frequently carved in an exuberant Gothic style with fretted tracery, pinnacles, and arcades.
- The interior is further illuminated by slatted or fretted skylights while lower down, translucent canopies act as light diffusors.
- An archway on the western side of the pool opens on the causeway, bordered with balustrades of fretted marble, and, at close intervals there are standard lamps, their great lanterns set upon the marble columns.
late Middle English: from Old French frete 'trelliswork' and freter (verb), of unknown origin.
- Each of a sequence of bars or ridges on the fingerboard of some stringed musical instruments (such as the guitar), used for fixing the positions of the fingers to produce the desired notes.More example sentences
- She studied what she had wrote, playing it back in her mind while lightly tapping her foot as she moved her hand to the various positions on the frets of the guitar.
- The instrument has no frets or fingerboard; the strings float in the air.
- He positioned her left hand and put her fingers on certain frets.
verb (frets, fretting, fretted)[with object] (often as adjective fretted) Back to top
- 1Provide (a stringed instrument) with frets.More example sentences
- The ability of fretted instruments to play chords and drive a piece along rhythmically has done a lot to change the range of sound in Irish music over the past 30 years.
- The pipa is a plucked string instrument with a fretted fingerboard.
- More example sentences
- The violin is fretless; there are no bars on the neck of the instrument that divide the strings into exact musical intervals corresponding to the chromatic, Western, scale.
- The breakup of the party began when a comment about Jaco Pastorius led to a discussion about fretted versus fretless basses, and which Pastorius album was his best.
- Like all good early '80s albums, it features lots of fretless bass and glistening electronics.
early 16th century: of unknown origin.