Simple Definition of restrain
: to prevent (a person or animal) from doing something
: to prevent (a person or animal) from moving by using physical force
: to keep (something) under control
Full Definition of restrain
1 a : to prevent from doing, exhibiting, or expressing something <restrained the child from jumping> b : to limit, restrict, or keep under control <try to restrain your anger>
2 : to moderate or limit the force, effect, development, or full exercise of <restrain trade>
3 : to deprive of liberty; especially : to place under arrest or restraint
Examples of restrain
He could not restrain the dog from attacking.
He could restrain himself no longer.
Hospital orderlies needed to restrain the patient.
He was restrained and placed in a holding cell.
He could barely restrain his anger.
The manufacturer took measures to restrain costs.
Origin of restrain
Middle English restraynen, from Anglo-French restreindre, from Latin restringere to restrain, restrict, from re- + stringere to bind tight — more at strain
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of restrain
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