Pronunciation Noun


  1. (biology) A physical, chemical, infective agent aggressing an organism.
  2. (biology) Aggression toward an organism resulting in a response in an attempt to restore previous conditions.
  3. (countable, physics) The internal distribution of force across a small boundary per unit area of that boundary (pressure) within a body. It causes strain or deformation and is typically symbolised by σ or τ.
  4. (countable, physics) Force externally applied to a body which cause internal stress within the body.
  5. (uncountable) Emotional pressure suffered by a human being or other animal.
    Go easy on him, he's been under a lot of stress lately.
  6. (uncountable, phonetics) The emphasis placed on a syllable of a word.
    Some people put the stress on the first syllable of “controversy”; others put it on the second.
  7. (uncountable) Emphasis placed on words in speaking.
  8. (uncountable) Emphasis placed on a particular point in an argument or discussion (whether spoken or written).
  9. Obsolete form of distress#English|distress.
  10. (Scotland, legal) distress; the act of distraining; also, the thing distrained.
Synonyms Translations Translations Translations Translations Verb

stress (stresses, present participle stressing; past and past participle stressed)

  1. To apply force to (a body or structure) causing strain.
  2. To apply emotional pressure to (a person or animal).
  3. (informal) To suffer stress; to worry or be agitated.
  4. To emphasise (a syllable of a word).
    “Emphasis” is stressed on the first syllable, but “emphatic” is stressed on the second.
  5. To emphasise (words in speaking).
  6. To emphasise (a point) in an argument or discussion.
    I must stress that this information is given in strict confidence.
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