Contraction


Contraction
Contraction Con*trac"tion, n. [L. contractio: cf. F. contraction.] 1. The act or process of contracting, shortening, or shrinking; the state of being contracted; as, contraction of the heart, of the pupil of the eye, or of a tendon; the contraction produced by cold. [1913 Webster]

2. (Math.) The process of shortening an operation. [1913 Webster]

3. The act of incurring or becoming subject to, as liabilities, obligation, debts, etc.; the process of becoming subject to; as, the contraction of a disease. [1913 Webster]

4. Something contracted or abbreviated, as a word or phrase; -- as, plenipo for plenipotentiary; crim. con. for criminal conversation, etc. [1913 Webster]

5. (Gram.) The shortening of a word, or of two words, by the omission of a letter or letters, or by reducing two or more vowels or syllables to one; as, ne'er for never; can't for can not; don't for do not; it's for it is. [1913 Webster]

6. A marriage contract. [Obs.] --Shak. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

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