1 /taIt/ adjective
1 CLOTHES fitting a part of your body very closely, especially in a way that is uncomfortable: tight trousers | My shoes were far too tight and I was in agony by the time I got home. | be a tight fit (=only just fits someone): The top is rather a tight fit.
—see also: skin­tight, tight­fitting
2 PULLED/STRETCHED string, wire, cloth etc that is tight has been pulled or stretched firmly so that it is straight or cannot move: pull sth tight: Pull the thread tight. | The bandage must be tight enough to stop the bleeding.
3 FIRMLY FIXED/FASTENED something such as a screw or lid that is tight is firmly fixed and is difficult to move: Check that the screws are tight.
4 a tight hold/grip a firm hold on something: His mother kept a tight hold on his hand.
5 STRICT CONTROL controlled very strictly and firmly: Spending is kept within very tight limits. | Security was very tight for the president's visit. | keep a tight rein on (=control someone or something very strictly) | run a tight ship (=manage a company, organization etc very effectively by having strict rules)
6 MONEY informal
a) if money is tight, you do not have enough of it: money is tight/things are tight: Money was tight and he needed a job badly.
b) someone who is tight is not generous and tries very hard to avoid spending money; mean 2 (2)
—see also: tight­fisted
7 LITTLE TIME if time is tight, it is difficult for you to do everything you need to do in the time available: tight schedule/deadline (=one that gives you very little time to do or finish something): a tight deadline | It'll be a bit tight, but we should just get there and back in time.
8 LITTLE SPACE if space is tight, there is only just enough space to fit something into a place: a tight squeeze/fit (=a situation where there is only just enough space for things or people to fit): It was a tight squeeze, but somehow we all got into the car.
9 CLOSE TOGETHER placed or standing very close together: She wore her hair in a tight bun.
10 CLOSE RELATIONSHIP a tight group of people, countries etc have a close relationship with each other and are closely connected with each other
11 CHEST/STOMACH ETC feeling painful or uncomfortable, because you are ill or worried: He had been complaining of a tight chest and sore throat.
12 SMILE/EXPRESSION/VOICE ETC showing that you are annoyed, or upset: Her mother gave a tight, forced smile.
—see also: tight­lipped
13 BEND/TURN very curved so that it turns very quickly to another direction: Careful now, there's a tight bend coming up.
14 in a tight corner/spot informal in a difficult situation: I'm always willing to help a friend in a tight spot.
15 PLAY/PERFORMANCE performed very exactly, with no unnecessary pauses: a tight, well-rehearsed production
16 GAME/COMPETITION a tight game, competition etc is one in which the teams, competitors etc all play well and it is not easy to win: It was a tight match, with the winning goal scored in the final minute.
17 DRUNK (never before noun) old-fashioned informal drunk
—see also: airtight, watertight — tightly adjective: Marie held the baby tightly in her arms. — tightness noun (U) 2 adverb very firmly or closely; tightly: hold tight: Hold tight to the safety rail. | keep sth tight shut: I kept my eyes tight shut and hoped they would go away. —see also: sit tight sit (5), sleep tight sleep 1 (4)

Longman dictionary of contemporary English. 2004.

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  • tight — [tīt] adj. [ME, altered (prob. infl. by toght: see TAUT) < thight < OE thight, strong, akin to ON thēttr, Ger dicht, tight, thick < IE base * tenk , to thicken, congeal > MIr tēcht, coagulated] 1. Obs. dense 2. so close or compact in… …   English World dictionary

  • Tight — Tight, a. [Compar. {Tighter} (t[imac]t [ e]r); superl. {Tightest}.] [OE. tight, thiht; probably of Scand. origin; cf. Icel. [thorn][=e]ttr, Dan. t[ae]t, Sw. t[ a]t: akin to D. & G. dicht thick, tight, and perhaps to E. thee to thrive, or to thick …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • tight — tight, tightly Tight is used as an adverb in combination with a number of verbs, primarily in commands or instructions: hold tight, sit tight, sleep tight. It also occurs as the first element in a few compound adjectives, e.g. tight fisted, tight …   Modern English usage

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  • tight´en|er — tight|en «TY tuhn», transitive verb. to make tight or tighter: »He tightened his belt. –v.i. to become tight or tighter: »The rope tightened as I pulled on it. –tight´en|er, noun …   Useful english dictionary

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