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CONTRACTION. An abbreviation; a mode of writing or printing by which some of the letters of a word are omitted. See Abbreviations.

References in classic literature ?
Old Sharon burst into a fierce laugh--a laugh strangely accompanied by a frowning contraction of his eyebrows, and a frightful exhibition of the whole inside of his mouth.
A nervous contraction at one corner of her mouth drew up the lips out of the symmetrically right line, when, they moved.
They are in a state of extreme contraction, far exceeding the usual rigor mortis.
With his chin sunk upon his breast, and his downcast eyes quite hidden by the contraction of his knotted brows, he might have been asleep for any sign of consciousness he gave until the coach stopped, when he raised his head, and glancing through the window, inquired what place that was.
A violent contraction of the lunar crust, while cooling, might suffice to imprint this gigantic star.
These clouds, or blushes as they may be called, are said to be produced by the alternate expansion and contraction of minute vesicles containing variously coloured fluids.
Pierre, give me the coffee," she said, addressing Petritsky, whom she called as a contraction of his surname, making no secret of her relations with him.
Mrs Clennam, with a deep contraction of her brows, was looking at him.
Now, whether a peculiar contraction of the Jew's red eye-brows, and a half closing of his deeply-set eyes, warned Miss Nancy that she was disposed to be too communicative, is not a matter of much importance.
It is allowed, that senates and great councils are often troubled with redundant, ebullient, and other peccant humours; with many diseases of the head, and more of the heart; with strong convulsions, with grievous contractions of the nerves and sinews in both hands, but especially the right; with spleen, flatus, vertigos, and deliriums; with scrofulous tumours, full of fetid purulent matter; with sour frothy ructations: with canine appetites, and crudeness of digestion, besides many others, needless to mention.
Our old acquaintance Montalais, therefore, made his majesty a profound courtesy, the more respectful from the necessity she was under of concealing certain contractions of her laughing lips, which the king might not have attributed to their real cause.
Journeys, London, servants, horses, table-- contractions and restrictions every where

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