Stiff·en v. t. [imp. & p. p. Stiffened p. pr. & vb. n. Stiffening.]
1. To make stiff; to make less pliant or flexible; as, to stiffen cloth with starch.
Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood. --Shak.
2. To inspissate; to make more thick or viscous; as, to stiffen paste.
3. To make torpid; to benumb.
Stiff·en, v. i. To become stiff or stiffer, in any sense of the adjective.
Like bristles rose my stiffening hair. --Dryden.
The tender soil then stiffening by degrees. --Dryden.
Some souls we see,
Grow hard and stiffen with adversity. --Dryden.
v 1: become stiff or stiffer; "He stiffened when he saw his boss
enter the room" [ant: loosen]
2: make stiff or stiffer; "Stiffen the cream by adding
gelatine" [ant: loosen]
3: restrict; "Tighten the rules"; "stiffen the regulations"
[syn: tighten, tighten up, constrain]