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- (intransitive) To extend or expand, as from internal pressure; to swell
- 1835, William Gilmore Simms, The Partisan, Harper, Chapter XIV, page 180:
- Then came the arrowy flight and form of the hurricane itself—its actual bulk—its imbodied power, pressing along through the forest in a gyratory progress, not fifty yards wide, never distending in width, yet capriciously winding from right to left and left to right.
- (transitive, reflexive, archaic) To extend; to stretch out; to spread out.
- 1662 Thomas Salusbury, Galileo's Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems (Dialogue 2):
- (Can we date this quote?) John Milton
- But say, what mean those coloured streaks in heaven / Distended as the brow of God appeased?
- (transitive) To cause to swell.
- (biology) To cause gravidity.
To extend or expand
To cause to swell
- “distend” in John A. Simpson and Edward S. C. Weiner, editors, The Oxford English Dictionary, 2nd edition, Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1989, →ISBN.