inhibit

verb
in·​hib·​it | \ in-ˈhi-bət How to pronounce inhibit (audio) \
inhibited; inhibiting; inhibits

Definition of inhibit

transitive verb

1 : to prohibit from doing something
2a : to hold in check : restrain
b : to discourage from free or spontaneous activity especially through the operation of inner psychological or external social constraints

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Other Words from inhibit

inhibitive \ in-​ˈhi-​bə-​tiv How to pronounce inhibit (audio) \ adjective
inhibitory \ in-​ˈhi-​bə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce inhibit (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for inhibit

forbid, prohibit, interdict, inhibit mean to debar one from doing something or to order that something not be done. forbid implies that the order is from one in authority and that obedience is expected. smoking is forbidden in the building prohibit suggests the issuing of laws, statutes, or regulations. prohibited the sale of liquor interdict implies prohibition by civil or ecclesiastical authority usually for a given time or a declared purpose. practices interdicted by the church inhibit implies restraints or restrictions that amount to prohibitions, not only by authority but also by the exigencies of the time or situation. conditions inhibiting the growth of free trade

Examples of inhibit in a Sentence

You shouldn't allow fear of failure to inhibit you. He was inhibited by modesty. Fear can inhibit people from expressing their opinions. drugs that are used to inhibit infection Strict laws are inhibiting economic growth.
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Recent Examples on the Web However, Ehresmann said Minnesota needs to reach 80% or more to inhibit the spread of the highly infectious coronavirus that causes COVID-19. Jeremy Olson, Star Tribune, 26 May 2021 The feed additives help to inhibit the microbes in a cow's stomach from making methane, which is usually produced as a byproduct of digesting fibrous plant material like grass. Nell Lewis, CNN, 18 May 2021 All of these antibodies bind to the receptor-binding domain, either to the receptor-binding motif, which interacts directly with the ACE2 receptor, or to other parts of the receptor-binding domain to inhibit function. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 13 May 2021 The determination is likely to significantly inhibit the ability of federal prosecutors to bring homicide charges in connection with Sicknick’s death. BostonGlobe.com, 19 Apr. 2021 The antiviral caught researchers’ attention early last year for its ability to inhibit SARS-CoV-2 in a lab dish. Kelly Servick, Science | AAAS, 16 Mar. 2021 However, an untimely bye week, featuring a 10-day hiatus between games, may inhibit their momentum. Dallas News, 3 May 2021 Antioxidants neutralize free radicals thus helping to inhibit inflammation and offer protection against photo-damage. Alex Zhavoronkov, Forbes, 27 Apr. 2021 Pumping sound into the cabin has become a thing because turbochargers inhibit intake and exhaust noise. Tony Quiroga, Car and Driver, 20 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'inhibit.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of inhibit

15th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for inhibit

Middle English, from Latin inhibitus, past participle of inhibēre, from in- in- entry 2 + habēre to have — more at habit entry 1

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Time Traveler for inhibit

Time Traveler

The first known use of inhibit was in the 15th century

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Statistics for inhibit

Last Updated

22 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Inhibit.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/inhibit. Accessed 24 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for inhibit

inhibit

verb

English Language Learners Definition of inhibit

: to keep (someone) from doing what he or she wants to do
: to prevent or slow down the activity or occurrence of (something)

inhibit

verb
in·​hib·​it | \ in-ˈhi-bət How to pronounce inhibit (audio) \
inhibited; inhibiting

Kids Definition of inhibit

: to prevent or hold back from doing something Shyness inhibited her in making new friends.

inhibit

transitive verb
in·​hib·​it | \ in-ˈhib-ət How to pronounce inhibit (audio) \

Medical Definition of inhibit

1a : to restrain from free or spontaneous activity especially through the operation of inner psychological or external social constraints an inhibited person
b : to check or restrain the force or vitality of inhibit aggressive tendencies
2a : to reduce or suppress the activity of a presynaptic neuron can not only excite a postsynaptic neuron but can also inhibit it— H. W. Kendler
b : to retard or prevent the formation of
c : to retard, interfere with, or prevent (a process or reaction) inhibit ovulation

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