Definition of shorten in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈSHôrtn/


1Make or become shorter: [with object]: he shortened his stride [no object]: around mid-September, days shorten and temperatures dip
More example sentences
  • Do you think Setta needs to shorten his stride when approaching the ball on field goals?
  • In the fall and as winter approaches, the days shorten and temperatures drop.
  • With less flexibility at the hip and ankle, your stride will shorten.
make shorter, abbreviate, abridge, condense, précis, synopsize, contract, compress, reduce, shrink, diminish, cut (down);
dock, trim, crop, pare down, prune;
curtail, truncate
1.1 [with object] Sailing Reduce the amount of (sail) exposed to the wind.
Example sentences
  • He hung a lamp on the mast and shortened the sail, but it was past midnight when Setisia retired to the cabin.
1.2(With reference to gambling odds) make or become shorter; decrease: [no object]: the odds had shortened to 14-1
More example sentences
  • Bookmaker William Hill reported more bets than ever for the annual festive flutter and shortened the odds.
  • But counting the odds never shortened them, and he sighed and shook himself.
  • This shortens the odds for the other pub winners as far as the grand prize of a digital camera goes with two absentee winners not going into the draw.
1.3 [with object] Prosody & Phonetics Make (a vowel or syllable) short.
Example sentences
  • Leaving Rome and heading south or east, you find a tendency of shortening non-stressed vowels and reducing them to schwas.

Words that rhyme with shorten

boughten, chorten, foreshorten, Laughton, Morton, Naughton, Orton, quartan, quartern, tauten, torten, Wharton

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: short·en

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