control

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

Definition of control

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1a : 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
2a : to incorporate suitable controls in a controlled test — see also controlled experiment
b archaic : to check, test, or verify by evidence or experiments

intransitive verb

: to incorporate controls in an experiment or study used with forcontrol 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 pluralprice 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 : a device or mechanism used to regulate or guide the operation of a machine, apparatus, or system the controls of the aircraft
b : an organization that directs a spaceflight mission control
(2) : one (such as an organism, culture, or group) that is part of a control experiment and is used as a standard of comparison … the residents in the experimental group also seemed to have a lower rate of mortality when compared with controls— Ellen J. Langer and Jerry Avorn often used before another nounBecause patients sometimes get better or worse on their own, drug tests also need a control group to compare the new drug with standard treatment or a placebo.— Marilyn Chase
d : a personality or spirit believed to actuate the utterances or performances of a spiritualist medium
4 or less commonly Control : control key

Keep scrolling for more

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

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

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.
See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Kia's latest infotainment system is crisply rendered and highly intuitive, and is controlled through a standard 8.0-inch touchscreen. Mike Sutton, Car and Driver, "Kia’s 2021 Seltos Is Attractive and Practical," 17 Feb. 2020 When such practices are followed, in tandem with internal audits and inspections by regulatory authorities, a manufacturer can establish a framework to identify, scientifically evaluate, and control potential risks to product quality. Leah Christl, STAT, "From bench to bedside, biologics require excellence at every stage," 13 Feb. 2020 Researchers in China are now testing remdesivir in a randomized, controlled trial against the outbreak there. Scientific American, "To Fight Coronavirus Outbreak, Doctors Deploy Drugs Targeting HIV, Malaria And Ebola," 13 Feb. 2020 But that old story has begun to change thanks to chefs who appreciate the consistency in flavor of sustainably farmed fish, which comes with controlling what fish eat. Adam Skolnick, Longreads, "The Poke Paradox," 12 Feb. 2020 After a battle with Lori's boyfriend Kyle (who, at this point, has teamed up with the Wiccan leader to take Lori down), the Birds of Prey help save Lori, but end up giving her to Doctor Fate, who would help her navigate and control her powers. Gina Vaynshteyn, refinery29.com, "Birds Of Prey," 10 Feb. 2020 When controlling what is known about us is difficult, the natural path is pseudonymization: establishing online presence without using a real name. Jonathan Zittrain, The Atlantic, "We May Have No Privacy, But Things Can Always Get Worse," 7 Feb. 2020 With no Drummond in the mix, the Thunder should have a much easier time controlling the glass against a Pistons team ranked 27th in rebounds per game and 23rd in defensive rebound percentage. Geoff Clark, USA TODAY Sportsbook Wire, "Detroit Pistons at Oklahoma City Thunder odds, picks and best bets," 7 Feb. 2020 For the Persians, this battle would have seemed a minor obstacle on their path to controlling the Aegean. National Geographic, "At the Battle of Marathon, Athens' underdog victory stunned Persia," 6 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Weber was found guilty of carrying a firearm while intoxicated, a misdemeanor, and sentenced to one year of community control and a 10-day jail sentence that was suspended, according to court records. Madeline Mitchell, Cincinnati.com, "Clermont County man claims law banning use of firearms while intoxicated is unconstitutional," 19 Feb. 2020 But since winning full control of the state government in 2019, some firearms measures have failed to pass the legislature. Kerry Picket, Washington Examiner, "Deep-blue Democratic Virginia spurns Bloomberg," 19 Feb. 2020 As for the outcomes outside Oregon’s control that would most benefit the Ducks, Oregon State winning as much as possible this weekend helps UO because the Beavers are on the cusp of Q1-2 whereas ASU and UA are solidly in Q1 regardless. oregonlive, "Oregon Ducks men’s basketball resume review: Biggest road trip of season awaits in desert," 19 Feb. 2020 Positive train control is technology that involves installing software and transponders to communicate about how fast trains should be going on certain areas of track. USA TODAY, "Return of Alienstock, Mardi Gras hate crime, much ado about a hat: News from around our 50 states," 19 Feb. 2020 His delivery split the difference between the hoarse growls of DMX and the icy control of 50 Cent. Los Angeles Times, "In a too-brief life, Brooklyn rapper Pop Smoke had already recast the sound, and center, of hip-hop," 19 Feb. 2020 The county began leasing and operating the 83-bed Euclid Jail in 2014 as part of plans to bring all jails in the county under county control. Courtney Astolfi, cleveland, "Euclid Jail closes as Cuyahoga County considers future of jail regionalization," 18 Feb. 2020 Upgrades include fuel injection, traction control, and a full suspension setup from ARB. Mihir Maddireddy, Car and Driver, "Outdoors Retailer Beautifully Modernizes Jeep CJ-8 Scrambler," 18 Feb. 2020 To be sure, there are groups of nutritionists who believe portion control is the key to stemming obesity. Chase Purdy, Quartz, "Scientists are exploring food crunchiness as a tool to fight obesity," 15 Feb. 2020

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.

See More

First Known Use of control

Verb

1523, in the meaning defined at sense 2b

Noun

1564, 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

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about control

Time Traveler for control

Time Traveler

The first known use of control was in 1523

See more words from the same year

Statistics for control

Last Updated

21 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Control.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/control. Accessed 26 Feb. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for control

control

verb
How to pronounce control (audio)

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

Keep scrolling for more

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

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on control

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

WORD OF THE DAY

See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

More Confusing Words—Quiz

  • cats on impossible timber
  • The magician ______ moved the selected card to the top of the deck.
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Dictionary Devil

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!