crack·​down | \ ˈkrak-ˌdau̇n How to pronounce crackdown (audio) \

Definition of crackdown

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: an act or instance of cracking down

crack down

cracked down; cracking down; cracks down

Definition of crack down (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to take positive regulatory or disciplinary action

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Examples of crackdown in a Sentence

Noun Companies that pollute are the target of a new crackdown.
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Last month, an outspoken critic of Big Tech's dominance, Lina Khan, was sworn in as the new chair of the Federal Trade Commission, leaving many to speculate if a new crackdown on the industry could be imminent. Catherine Thorbecke, ABC News, 8 July 2021 In some ways, the airlines' crackdown was a long time coming and could benefit passengers who have to share their space with animals who simply are not equipped for air travel. Jonah Bayer, Travel + Leisure, 2 July 2021 The crackdown has only been in place for a few days now, and no pitchers have been caught. Eric Levenson, CNN, 24 June 2021 The crackdown is evidence that leader Xi Jinping has absolute authority in China, and this episode should give Americans the moral courage to stand up for our values. Sean-michael Pigeon, National Review, 17 June 2021 Tampa Bay Rays right-hander Tyler Glasnow, who suffered an elbow injury on Monday night, said the in-season crackdown was a contributing factor. Nick Piecoro, The Arizona Republic, 17 June 2021 The crackdown comes during a time when strikeouts are skyrocketing and pitchers’ spin rates are analyzed as closely as their ERA. Christian Red, Forbes, 15 June 2021 Canon lawyers and theologians said the crackdown was perhaps a sign that other lay movements, which have flourished over the last half-century but were largely left to govern themselves, might be similarly targeted. Nicole Winfield, Star Tribune, 11 June 2021 There may have been a sense that a crackdown was unavoidable given regulatory and consumer scrutiny over data generally. NBC News, 29 Apr. 2021

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


1935, in the meaning defined above


1939, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for crackdown

Time Traveler

The first known use of crackdown was in 1935

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Statistics for crackdown

Last Updated

19 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Crackdown.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 30 Jul. 2021.

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More Definitions for crackdown



English Language Learners Definition of crackdown

: a serious attempt to punish people for doing something that is not allowed : an increased effort to enforce a law or rule

More from Merriam-Webster on crackdown

Nglish: Translation of crackdown for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crackdown for Arabic Speakers


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