Definition of pressure in English:


Line breaks: pres|sure
Pronunciation: /ˈprɛʃə


[mass noun]
  • 1Continuous physical force exerted on or against an object by something in contact with it: the gate was buckling under the pressure of the crowd outside
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    • Usually the honey is extracted by crushing the comb and letting the honey drain out, often helped by extra pressure from a centrifuge.
    • This scissoring of the bones causes extra pressure to be forced upon the Carpal Tunnel.
    • Nikki took his foot in her lap and applied slight pressure to the tender spot.
  • 1.1 [count noun] The force per unit area exerted by a fluid against a surface with which it is in contact: gas can be fed to the turbines at a pressure of around 250 psi
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    • The systems and methods apply positive and negative fluid pressures to operate the pump and valve.
    • As for the control, the resulting new steady-state pressures and reflection coefficients of the OPR were measured.
    • The peptides seem to form metastable films which can be compressed to relatively large surface pressures.
  • 2The use of persuasion or intimidation to make someone do something: backbenchers put pressure on the government to provide safeguards [count noun]: the many pressures on girls to worry about their looks
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    • The Government set up the new proposals following pressure from parents and others for greater standardisation of terms and holidays.
    • Furthermore, the patient must be free to make their decision without pressure, persuasion or threat.
    • Mr Daniels says it is time for people to put pressure on Government and business if they want to avoid a collapse in society as we know it.
    coercion, force, compulsion, constraint, duress, oppression, enforcement, insistence, demand, entreaty, goading, pestering, provocation, harassment, nagging, harrying, badgering, intimidation, arm-twisting, pressurization, persuasion, influence
  • 2.1The influence or effect of someone or something: oil prices came under some downwards pressure
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    • Second, it effectively concentrates downward pressure of the dollar onto the euro, adding to the problems of the Euro-zone.
    • It was felt that the unemployment situation had already placed downward pressure on wages in the town.
    • She realises now that financial pressure could have an influence on her game.
  • 2.2A sense of stressful urgency caused by having too many demands on one’s time or resources: he resigned due to pressure of work [count noun]: the pressures of city life
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    • There's a new kind of pressure and an increased sense of urgency about dealing with problems.
    • It's the sharp end of the game, big city, big demands, big pressure - as a player that's the only place you ever wanted to be.
    • The stress and pressure of studying increases the body's demand for nutrients.
    strain, stress, tension, heat, burden, load, weight, drain, trouble, care, adversity, difficulty
    informal hassle


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late Middle English: from Old French, from Latin pressura, from press- 'pressed', from the verb premere (see press1).

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