Synonyms of 'tense'
the form of a verb that indicates whether the action referred to in the sentence is located in the past, the present, or the futurethe tense atmosphere of the talks
An uneasy calm has settled over the city.
I think I've got one of the most stressful jobs there is.
fraught (informal), , , , ,
It has been a somewhat fraught day.
uncomfortable, , ,
There was another long and uncomfortable silence.
The presentation of a speech can be a nerve-racking experience.
having, showing, or causing mental or emotional strainHe had been very tense, but he finally relaxed.
I get very nervous when I'm in the house alone at night.
wound up (informal),
I was too wound up to sleep.
edgy, , ,
She was nervous and edgy, still chain-smoking.
She admitted she was still anxious about the situation.
My father seemed very restless and excited.
People are still terribly apprehensive about the future.
Investors have become jittery about the country's economy.
Penny never got uptight about exams.
Ever since their arrival she had felt on edge.
I told myself not to be so jumpy.
When I'm feeling overwrought, I try to take some time out to relax.
strung up (informal),
Those who saw him at the Olympics will recall just how strung up he was.
I was so fidgety and nervous.
keyed up, ,
I wasn't able to sleep that night, I was so keyed up.
stretched tightShe lay, eyes shut, body tense.
to make or become tenseHis stomach muscles tensed.
He flung his whole weight back, tightening the rope.
strain, , ,
Several thousand supporters strained to catch a glimpse of the new president.
Make sure you don't stretch the pastry as you ease it into the corners.
He slowly flexed his muscles.
The blood supply to the skin is reduced when muscles stiffen.
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in the sense of anxious
causing anxietyShe admitted she was still anxious about the situation.
hot and bothered,
like a fish out of water,
on pins and needles,
in the sense of apprehensive
fearful or anxious about the futurePeople are still terribly apprehensive about the future.
in the sense of edgy
nervous, irritable, or anxiousShe was nervous and edgy, still chain-smoking.
See related content
Video: pronunciation of 'tense'
Thesaurus for tense from the Collins English Thesaurus