curtail


cur·tail

verb \(ˌ)kər-ˈtāl\

: to reduce or limit (something)

Full Definition of CURTAIL

transitive verb
:  to make less by or as if by cutting off or away some part <curtail the power of the executive branch> <curtail inflation>
cur·tail·er \-ˈtā-lər\ noun

Examples of CURTAIL

  1. The new laws are an effort to curtail illegal drug use.
  2. School activities are being curtailed due to a lack of funds.

Origin of CURTAIL

by folk etymology from earlier curtal to dock an animal's tail, from curtal, noun, animal with a docked tail, from Middle French courtault — more at curtal
First Known Use: 1580

Browse

Next Word in the Dictionary: curtailedness
Previous Word in the Dictionary: curt
All Words Near: curtail

Seen & Heard

What made you want to look up curtail? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

Get Our Free Apps
Voice Search, Favorites,
Word of the Day, and More
Join Us on FB & Twitter
Get the Word of the Day and More