nerve

(redirected from strained every nerve)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Idioms, Encyclopedia.
References in classic literature ?
I strained every nerve to do so: by striving to amuse them, I endeavoured to attract them to my side; by the exertion of such authority as I possessed, and by such severity as I dared to use, I tried to deter them from tormenting the guests; and by reproaching their unmannerly conduct, to make them ashamed to repeat it.
The intrepid treasure-seeker walked round it, and, selecting the spot from whence it appeared most susceptible to attack, placed his lever in one of the crevices, and strained every nerve to move the mass.
I thought, sir, that you were on the road a long way before me; and I strained every nerve to overtake you, and made effort on effort to utter your name and entreat you to stop-- but my movements were fettered, and my voice still died away inarticulate; while you, I felt, withdrew farther and farther every moment.