Did you know?

Click any word in a definition or example to find the entry for that word

overstretch - definition and synonyms


What are red words?

90% of the time, speakers of English use just 7,500 words in speech and writing. These words appear in red, and are graded with stars. One-star words are frequent, two-star words are more frequent, and three-star words are the most frequent.



The thesaurus of synonyms and related words is fully integrated into the dictionary. Click on the thesaurus category heading under the button in an entry to see the synonyms and related words for that meaning.

verb [intransitive/transitive] overstretch pronunciation in British English /ˌəʊvə(r)ˈstretʃ/
Word Forms
present tense
present participleoverstretching
past tenseoverstretched
past participleoverstretched
  1. 1
    to try to do too much with the money, people etc that are available

    Police resources are overstretched in their fight against crime.

  2. 2
    to do more than you are capable of
    overstretch yourself:

    He tends to overstretch himself in his efforts to succeed.



used to describe something which is done more carefully and over a longer period of time …

BuzzWord Article

Open Dictionary


the practice of giving birth in the presence of several friends and relatives

add a word


A must for anyone with an interest in the changing face of language. The Macmillan Dictionary blog explores English as it is spoken around the world today.

global English and language change from our blog
Macmillan learn live love play