strain (v.) Old form(s): strain'd , straine
constrain, force, press
KJ III.iii.46[King John to Hubert, of laughter] keep men's eyes / And strain their cheeks to idle merriment [or: stretch]
MA IV.i.250[Friar to all] to strange sores strangely they strain the cure
MV IV.i.181[Portia as Balthasar to Shylock] The quality of mercy is not strained
RJ II.iii.15[Friar alone, of natural things] Nor aught so good but, strained from that fair use, / Revolts from true birth
SHAKESPEARE'S WORDS © 2020 DAVID CRYSTAL & BEN CRYSTAL