noun \kən-ˈstrānt\

: something that limits or restricts someone or something

: control that limits or restricts someone's actions or behavior

Full Definition of CONSTRAINT

a :  the act of constraining
b :  the state of being checked, restricted, or compelled to avoid or perform some action <the constraint and monotony of a monastic life — Matthew Arnold>
c :  a constraining condition, agency, or force :  check <put legal constraints on the board's activities>
a :  repression of one's own feelings, behavior, or actions
b :  a sense of being constrained :  embarrassment

Examples of CONSTRAINT

  1. Lack of funding has been a major constraint on the building's design.
  2. They demand freedom from constraint.
  3. They refuse to work under constraint any longer.


Middle English, from Middle French constrainte, from constraindre
First Known Use: 15th century


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