control

verb
con·​trol | \ kən-ˈtrōl How to pronounce control (audio) \
controlled; controlling

Definition of control

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a archaic : to check, test, or verify by evidence or experiments
b : to incorporate suitable controls in a controlled experiment
2a : to exercise restraining or directing influence over : regulate control one's anger
b : to have power over : rule A single company controls the industry.
c : to reduce the incidence or severity of especially to innocuous levels control an insect population control a disease

intransitive verb

: to incorporate controls in an experiment or study used with for control for socioeconomic differences

control

noun, often attributive

Definition of control (Entry 2 of 2)

1a : an act or instance of controlling also : power or authority to guide or manage He took control of the family business.
b : skill in the use of a tool, instrument, technique, or artistic medium a singer's control of her voice
c : the regulation of economic activity especially by government directive usually used in plural price controlsrent controls
d : the ability of a baseball pitcher to control the location of a pitch within the strike zone
2 : restraint, reserve exercised control of his passions
3 : one that controls: such as
a(1) : an experiment in which the subjects are treated as in a parallel experiment except for omission of the procedure or agent under test and which is used as a standard of comparison in judging experimental effects

called also control experiment

(2) : one (such as an organism, culture, or group) that is part of a control
b : a device or mechanism used to regulate or guide the operation of a machine, apparatus, or system the controls of the aircraft
c : an organization that directs a spaceflight mission control
d : a personality or spirit believed to actuate the utterances or performances of a spiritualist medium
4 or less commonly Control : control key

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Other Words from control

Verb

controllability \ kən-​ˌtrō-​lə-​ˈbi-​lə-​tē How to pronounce controllability (audio) \ noun
controllable \ kən-​ˈtrō-​lə-​bəl How to pronounce controllable (audio) \ adjective
controlment \ kən-​ˈtrōl-​mənt How to pronounce controlment (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for control

Synonyms: Verb

bridle, check, constrain, contain, curb, govern, hold, inhibit, keep, measure, pull in, regulate, rein (in), restrain, rule, tame

Synonyms: Noun

controller, regulator

Antonyms: Verb

lose

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Choose the Right Synonym for control

Verb

conduct, manage, control, direct mean to use one's powers to lead, guide, or dominate. conduct implies taking responsibility for the acts and achievements of a group. conducted negotiations manage implies direct handling and manipulating or maneuvering toward a desired result. manages a meat market control implies a regulating or restraining in order to keep within bounds or on a course. controlling his appetite direct implies constant guiding and regulating so as to achieve smooth operation. directs the store's day-to-day business

Noun

power, authority, jurisdiction, control, command, sway, dominion mean the right to govern or rule or determine. power implies possession of ability to wield force, authority, or influence. the power to mold public opinion authority implies power for a specific purpose within specified limits. granted the authority to manage her estate jurisdiction applies to official power exercised within prescribed limits. the bureau having jurisdiction over parks control stresses the power to direct and restrain. you are responsible for the students under your control command implies the power to make arbitrary decisions and compel obedience. the army officer in command sway suggests the extent of exercised power or influence. the empire extended its sway over the region dominion stresses sovereign power or supreme authority. given dominion over all the animals

Examples of control in a Sentence

Verb

The parents could not control their child. The police controlled the crowd. The small boy could not control the big dog. Her family controls the business. One country controls the whole island. The rebel army now controls nearly half the country. The lights on stage are controlled by this computer. She struggled to control the cart as it rolled before her down the steep, bumpy road. He controlled the volume by turning the radio's knob. A thermostat controls the room's temperature.

Noun

The city wanted local control of education. The tribes fought for control over the territory. He took control of the family farm. She hired an accountant to take control of her money. He lost all muscle control in his left arm. The soccer player showed good control of the ball. a teacher with good control of her students The farmer used an organic pest control on his crops. To cut down on competition, the government passed price controls on prescription drugs. The President wants stricter controls on immigration.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

This doc series’ real point reiterates CNN’s political objective: to control the way people think and dictate their taste. Armond White, National Review, "CNN Fakes Movie History as Well as the News," 5 July 2019 As a manager, Parker helped build Elvis's career from nothing—but was also said to be extremely controlling, and according to Deadline, rumor has it that Parker took half of Elvis's earnings home himself. Chloe Foussianes, Town & Country, "Baz Luhrmann Is Making an Elvis Presley Biopic. Here's Everything We Know.," 2 July 2019 Scientists have designed powerful new molecular manipulation tools, which go by the names Corelets and CasDrop, that allow researchers to control how these droplets form. Elizabeth O'day, Scientific American, "A Special Class of Proteins Is Promising Targets for Drugs for Cancer and Alzheimer’s," 1 July 2019 Growers will have an appetite for improved hydroponics, HVAC and lighting systems, and software to control that hardware. Shafin Diamond Tejani, Quartz, "What Mark Twain can teach us about the weed industry," 29 June 2019 What Ingrum didn’t know was that those financial projections overlooked many realities of modern farming in the U.S., where much of the country’s agricultural output is controlled by a handful of giant companies. Isaac Arnsdorf, ProPublica, "How a Top Chicken Company Cut Off Black Farmers, One by One," 26 June 2019 Today’s social-media landscape is riddled with flaws: Twitter and YouTube’s failure to control hateful content, Instagram’s my-perfect-life curation that makes users feel inadequate, Facebook’s repeated violations of privacy. Joe Lindsey, Outside Online, "The Coach That Meets You in Your Inbox," 24 June 2019 The amount of digital advertising controlled by Google and Facebook is also an area of competitive concern. Amanda Lotz, The Conversation, "Amazon, Google and Facebook warrant antitrust scrutiny for many reasons – not just because they’re large," 24 June 2019 And just as governments and local health ministries were attempting to teach citizens best practices in a bid to control the spread of the disease, health workers like Ibeneme were often learning on the job—at a high risk. Yomi Kazeem, Quartz Africa, "As Ebola takes hold in DRC, a Nigerian doctor reminds us of the sacrifices made in West Africa’s crisis," 21 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Sometimes, however, algae colonies can grow out of control and become harmful; cyanobacteria produces toxins that can cause abdominal pain, headaches, fever, vomiting and a host of other symptoms, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Toxic Algal Bloom Forces Mississippi to Close All Its Mainland Beaches," 10 July 2019 HABs occur when algae – simple plants that live in the sea and freshwater – grow out of control. Leada Gore | Lgore@al.com, al.com, "Mississippi beach closures: Officials warn against eating fish, seafood in algae-affected areas," 8 July 2019 The blooms occur when colonies of algae grow out of control. Doug Criss, CNN, "5 things to know for July 8: Women's World Cup, Iran, California earthquakes," 8 July 2019 The two repeatedly lied about having converted the industrial property into a rental space attractive for artists desperate for relief in the Bay Area’s out-of-control housing market, prosecutors said. James Queally, latimes.com, "Ghost Ship founder testifies at manslaughter trial: 'You can't put into words how I feel'," 8 July 2019 Their lives spiraled out of control, through hell and back. oregonlive.com, "A game of catch between Walter Bailey and Dan Devaney still is changing lives 37 years later," 5 July 2019 Rudimentary helmet drop test has been bolstered by rotational exam developed by NFL Football deaths were out of control. San Diego Union-Tribune, "It took decades, but football helmet testing is becoming more sophisticated," 5 July 2019 By the time the air tankers arrived the next day, the blaze was out of control. Tom Stienstra, SFChronicle.com, "With 147 million dead trees, Californians brace again for fire," 4 July 2019 The tragedy sparked a citywide conversation about the potential for bullying to spin out of control. Leslie Brody, WSJ, "New York City Struggles to End Bullying in Schools," 1 July 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'control.' 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 control

Verb

1523, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Noun

1565, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for control

Verb and Noun

Middle English countrollen, from Anglo-French contrerouler, from contreroule copy of an account, audit, from Medieval Latin contrarotulus, from Latin contra- + Medieval Latin rotulus roll — more at roll

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Statistics for control

Last Updated

11 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for control

The first known use of control was in 1523

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More Definitions for control

control

verb

English Language Learners Definition of control

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to direct the behavior of (a person or animal) : to cause (a person or animal) to do what you want
: to have power over (something)
: to direct the actions or function of (something) : to cause (something) to act or function in a certain way

control

noun

English Language Learners Definition of control (Entry 2 of 2)

: the power to make decisions about how something is managed or done
: the ability to direct the actions of someone or something
: an action, method, or law that limits the amount or growth of something

control

verb
con·​trol | \ kən-ˈtrōl How to pronounce control (audio) \
controlled; controlling

Kids Definition of control

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to have power over "Ah, gods, plural, as in, great beings that control the forces of nature and human endeavors…"— Rick Riordan, The Lightning Thief
2 : to direct the actions or behavior of Police can control a crowd.
3 : to keep within bounds : restrain Learn to control your temper.
4 : to direct the function of How do you control this machine?

control

noun

Kids Definition of control (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the power or authority to manage The city wanted local control of education.
2 : ability to keep within bounds or direct the operation of The fire is out of control. He lost control of the car.
3 : self-restraint I lost control and started yelling.
4 : regulation sense 2 price controls
5 : a device used to start, stop, or change the operation of a machine or system a radio control
6 : something that is not treated or exposed to testing in an experiment in order to serve as a comparison to others that have undergone treatment or exposure

control

verb
con·​trol | \ kən-ˈtrōl How to pronounce control (audio) \
controlled; controlling

Medical Definition of control

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to incorporate suitable controls in a controlled experiment
2 : to reduce the incidence or severity of especially to innocuous levels control an insect population a vaccine for controlling outbreaks of cholera

intransitive verb

: to incorporate controls in an experiment or study used with for failure to control for the difference in the rate of smoking between the two groups— Howard Bauchner et al

control

noun

Medical Definition of control (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an act or instance of controlling something control of acute intermittent porphyria
2 : one that is used in controlling something: as
a : an experiment in which the subjects are treated as in a parallel experiment except for omission of the procedure or agent under test and which is used as a standard of comparison in judging experimental effects

called also control experiment

b : one (as an organism, culture, or group) that is part of a control

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control

transitive verb
con·​trol
controlled; controlling

Legal Definition of control

1 : to exercise restraining or directing influence over especially by law
2 : to have power or authority over precedent controls the outcome in this case
3 : to have controlling interest in

Other Words from control

control noun

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Comments on control

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