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bend - definition and synonyms

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verb     bend pronunciation in British English
Word Forms
present tense
present participlebending
past tensebent
past participlebent
  1. 1
    [intransitive/transitive] to lean forwards and downwards, or to move the top part of your body forwards and downwards

    He bent and kissed her quickly.

    bend forwards:

    She bent forwards and whispered in my ear.

    bend down:

    Helen bent down to pick up her pen.

    bend over:

    Bend over and touch your toes.

    be bent double (=be completely bent over):

    Tom was bent double, holding his stomach in pain.

    1. a.
      [intransitive/transitive] if you bend your head or if it bends, you move it forwards and downwards without moving your body downwards

      The three of them sat there with their heads bent over their books.

  2. 2
    [intransitive] to become curved or folded and not straight

    tools that will not bend or break under stress

    bend under something:

    The slim branches were bending under the weight of their fruit.

    1. a.
      [intransitive] to move with a curving or folding movement
      bend in/out/forwards etc:

      The corners of the card bend inwards to form tabs.

    2. b.
      [intransitive] if a road, river etc bends, it changes direction in the shape of a curve

      The path bends sharply just before you enter the wood.

    3. c.
      [intransitive] if light bends, it changes direction
    4. d.
      [transitive] if you bend an object, you change it so that it becomes curved or folded and not straight

      This type of pipe can be easily bent by hand.

      bend something over/round something etc:

      Bend the wires round the battery.

      bend something into something:

      We bent the strips of clay into strange shapes.

    5. e.
      [intransitive/transitive] if you bend your arm, leg etc, or if it bends, you move it into a position that is not straight

      His arm was so stiff he couldn’t bend it at all.

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to manipulate someone psychologically so that they begin to question their own perceptions and memories

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the phenomenon by which an incompetent person is too incompetent to understand his own incompetence

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