What does the word shorten mean?

Usage examples for shorten

  1. More sensitive than she, feeling the situation much more uncomfortably for his country- woman than she felt it for herself, a foreign- looking fellow, who had not quite forgotten that he was an American, after a moment's hard struggle against his impulse, hastened forward to shorten for her that uncompanioned course across the floor under ten thousand search- lights. – Aurora the Magnificent by Gertrude Hall
  2. My envy with his honour now is bred; I hope to shorten Cromwell by the head. – Cromwell by Shakespeare (spurious and doubtful works)
  3. To shorten detail, it required two hours more to make another hundred feet; and then the Nautilus, after taking ten minutes to crawl an inch further, came to a perfect stand still. – All Around the Moon by Jules Verne