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to force (an object, especially a long or thin one) from a straight form into a curved or angular one, or from a curved or angular form into some different form:
to bend an iron rod into a hoop.
to direct or turn in a particular direction:
to bend one’s energies to the task.
to cause to submit or yield:
to bend someone to one’s will.
to modify or relax (restrictions, regulations, etc.) temporarily or in certain circumstances:
to bend the rules.
to incline mentally (usually followed by to or toward):
bending his thoughts back toward his childhood.
to pull back the string of (a bow or the like) in preparation for shooting.
Nautical. to fasten.
Archaic. to strain or brace tensely (often followed by up).
to become curved, crooked, or bent:
a bow that bends easily.
to assume a bent posture; stoop (often followed by over):
to bend as one walks; to bend over and pick up something.
to turn or incline in a particular direction; be directed:
The road bent toward the south.
to yield or submit; give in.
to bow in submission or reverence:
bending to one’s monarch.
to direct one’s energies:
We bent to our work as the bell sounded.
the act of bending.
something that bends; curve; crook:
a bend in the road; a bend in the curtain rod.
Nautical. any of various loops or knots for joining the ends of two ropes or the like, or for joining the end of a rope or the like to some other object.
bends, Nautical.

thick planking immediately below the waterways of a wooden vessel.
the wales of a vessel.

the bends, aeroembolism (def 2).
around / round the bend, Slang. insane; crazy:
These interruptions will send me round the bend!
bend / lean / fall over backward, to exert oneself to the utmost; make a serious effort:
They bent over backward to make sure their guests were comfortable.

a diagonal band extending from the dexter chief of an escutcheon to the sinister base.
Compare bend sinister.
in bend, (of a charge) set diagonally or in a diagonal row.

Tanning. half of a trimmed butt or hide.
a city in central Oregon.
Contemporary Examples

Amy Tan: How I Write Noah Charney December 10, 2013
Huckabee 2016: Bend Over and Take It Like a Prisoner! Olivia Nuzzi January 7, 2015
We Need Deficit Deal Now John Avlon October 27, 2011
Meet America’s New Top Ebola Fighter Abby Haglage September 25, 2014
‘True Detective’ Review: You Have to Watch HBO’s Revolutionary Crime Classic Andrew Romano January 10, 2014

Historical Examples

The Ghost Girl H. De Vere Stacpoole
The Roof of France Matilda Betham-Edwards
The Way of a Man Emerson Hough
Fair Margaret H. Rider Haggard
With Clive in India G. A. Henty

verb bends, bending, bent
to form or cause to form a curve, as by pushing or pulling
to turn or cause to turn from a particular direction: the road bends left past the church
(intransitive; often foll by down, etc) to incline the body; stoop; bow
to submit or cause to submit: to bend before superior force
(transitive) to turn or direct (one’s eyes, steps, attention, etc)
(transitive) to concentrate (the mind); apply oneself closely
(transitive) (nautical) to attach or fasten, as a sail to a boom or a line to a cleat
(informal) bend over backwards, to make a special effort, esp in order to please: he bends over backwards to accommodate his customers
(informal) bend someone’s ear, to speak at length to an unwilling listener, esp to voice one’s troubles
(informal) bend the rules, to ignore rules or change them to suit one’s own convenience
a curved part, as in a road or river
(nautical) a knot or eye in a line for joining it to another or to an object
the act or state of bending
(Brit, slang) round the bend, mad; crazy; eccentric
(heraldry) an ordinary consisting of a diagonal line traversing a shield

bend one’s elbow
bend over backwards
bend someone’s ear


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  • Bend dexter

    the ordinary bend, extending from the dexter chief to the sinister base. Historical Examples Cradock Nowell, Vol. 1 (of 3) Richard Doddridge Blackmore Lessons in the Art of Illuminating W. J. Loftie

  • Bend sinister

    a diagonal band extending from the sinister chief of an escutcheon to the dexter base: a supposed mark of bastardy. Historical Examples Notes and Queries, Vol. IV, Number 113, December 27, 1851 Various The Story of Brussels Ernest Gilliat-Smith A Complete Guide to Heraldry Arthur Charles Fox-Davies Notes and Queries, Number 51, October 19, 1850 […]

  • Benda

    noun Julien (ʒyljɑ̃). 1867–1956, French philosopher and novelist, who defended reason and intellect and attacked the influence of Bergson: author of La Trahison des clercs (1927) Historical Examples The Goose Man Jacob Wassermann Astounding Stories of Super-Science September 1930 Various The Goose Man Jacob Wassermann Astounding Stories of Super-Science September 1930 Various The Goose Man […]

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