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How to pronounce tension (audio)


Monster Trucks in Space

Dictionary definition of tension

A feeling of mental or emotional strain or stress, often characterized by a sense of unease or discomfort.
"The high-stress job created tension between the employees and their bosses."


Detailed meaning of tension

Tension can be caused by a variety of factors, such as conflicts, uncertainty, or fear, and it can manifest in different ways, such as physical discomfort, nervousness, or irritability. In a physical sense, tension can refer to the force exerted by an object under strain, such as a stretched rubber band or a compressed spring. Tension can also be used to describe the relationship between two or more people or groups that are in conflict or competition, such as political tension between nations or tension between coworkers in a stressful work environment. Overall, tension can be a sign of a need for resolution or change, and managing tension can be an important skill in personal, professional, or social contexts.

Example sentences containing tension

1. The room was filled with palpable tension before the final exam started.
2. The diplomatic talks were characterized by a constant undercurrent of tension.
3. The suspenseful movie had audiences on the edge of their seats with tension.
4. The tension between the two rival gangs had been escalating for weeks.
5. The therapist helped them address the tension that had built up in their relationship.
6. The tug-of-war created tension as each team strained to gain an advantage.

History and etymology of tension

The noun 'tension' traces its roots to the Latin word 'tensio,' which means 'a stretching' or 'a tightening.' It entered Middle English through Old French and took on its current form. 'Tension' refers to a feeling of mental or emotional strain or stress, often characterized by a sense of unease or discomfort. Its etymology aptly captures the essence of this term, emphasizing the idea of something being stretched or pulled taut, much like the mental and emotional strain experienced during times of stress. When used to describe a situation or a person's state of mind, 'tension' underscores the notion of something being stretched to its limit, highlighting the palpable discomfort and unease that can result from such stress or strain.

Quiz: Find the meaning of tension

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Further usage examples of tension

1. The political debate was charged with tension as opposing views clashed.
2. The tightrope walker balanced with grace despite the tension in the wire.
3. The economic uncertainty added to the overall tension in the business world.
4. The silence in the room was broken by a burst of tension-releasing laughter.
5. The mounting tension in the courtroom was shattered by the judge's gavel.
6. The romantic tension between the two characters was evident to everyone.
7. The tense situation required a leader who could defuse the tension with diplomacy.
8. The musician played a haunting melody that filled the air with tension.
9. The family gathering was filled with tension due to unresolved conflicts.
10. The game's outcome hung in the balance, creating an atmosphere of tension.
11. The tension in the rubber band increased as it was stretched to its limit.
12. The tight deadlines at work led to a high level of tension among the employees.
13. The tension between personal desires and societal expectations created inner conflict.
14. The confrontation between the hero and the villain reached its peak of tension.



stress, relaxation, calm, ease


Suffix -sion, Sorrow and Strife, Emotional Extremes and Reactions, Fear and Anxiety, Middle School 12, Anxiety and Fear

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