seize up - definition and synonyms

phrasal verb [intransitive]
present tense
I/you/we/theyseize up
he/she/itseizes up
present participleseizing up
past tenseseized up
past participleseized up
  1. to suddenly stop moving or working properly

    Her back seized up painfully after she’d lifted the box.

    If you don’t add oil, the engine will eventually seize up.

See also main entry: seize