en·​join | \ in-ˈjȯin How to pronounce enjoin (audio) , en- \
enjoined; enjoining; enjoins

Definition of enjoin

transitive verb

1 : to direct or impose by authoritative order or with urgent admonition enjoined us to be careful
2a : forbid, prohibit was enjoined by conscience from telling a lie
b : to prohibit by a judicial order : put an injunction on a book had been enjoined prior to publication— David Margolick

Choose the Right Synonym for enjoin

command, order, bid, enjoin, direct, instruct, charge mean to issue orders. command and order imply authority and usually some degree of formality and impersonality. command stresses official exercise of authority. a general commanding troops order may suggest peremptory or arbitrary exercise. ordered his employees about bid suggests giving orders peremptorily (as to children or servants). she bade him be seated enjoin implies giving an order or direction authoritatively and urgently and often with admonition or solicitude. a sign enjoining patrons to be quiet direct and instruct both connote expectation of obedience and usually concern specific points of procedure or method, instruct sometimes implying greater explicitness or formality. directed her assistant to hold all calls the judge instructed the jury to ignore the remark charge adds to enjoin an implication of imposing as a duty or responsibility. charged by the President with a secret mission

What do enjoin and junta have in common?

Enjoin has the Latin verb jungere, meaning "to join," at its root, but the kind of joining expressed by enjoin is quite particular: it is about linking someone to an action or activity by either requiring or prohibiting it. When it's the former at hand—that is, when enjoin is used to mean "to direct or impose by authoritative order or with urgent admonition"—the preposition to is typically employed, as in "they enjoined us to secrecy." When prohibition is involved, from is common, as in "signs enjoin attendees from photographing the event." In legal contexts, enjoining involves prohibition by judicial order, through means of an injunction, as in "the judge enjoined them from selling the contract."

Examples of enjoin in a Sentence

He was enjoined by his conscience from telling a lie. The judge enjoined them from selling the property.
Recent Examples on the Web The lawsuit, filed Wednesday, also asks the court to permanently enjoin Mr. DeSantis, a Republican, from retaliating against Mr. Warren. Joseph De Avila, WSJ, 17 Aug. 2022 On Monday, Scott Zweig, an attorney who has been a vocal opponent to changing the mascots, filed a lawsuit along with resident Mary McGowan seeking to enjoin the school board from voting on the matter. Ted Glanzer, Hartford Courant, 10 June 2022 Multiple lawsuits are pending to enjoin California’s mandates. Kenin M. Spivak, National Review, 8 Mar. 2022 Project Veritas tries to embarrass progressives by making secret videos of them, and last year petitioned the Court to enjoin Massachusetts from enforcing a state law that bans the surreptitious taping of public officials. Jane Mayer, The New Yorker, 21 Jan. 2022 In the Arkansas case, plaintiffs are asking the court to enjoin Arkansas from using the maps for state House elections, setting up a legal fight months before the boundaries are set to be put to use. Ryan Tarinelli, Arkansas Online, 30 Dec. 2021 Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett have declined to enjoin New York’s and Maine’s healthcare-worker vaccine mandates that deny religious, but not medical, exemptions. The Editorial Board, WSJ, 20 Dec. 2021 The lawsuit also seeks to enjoin James' involvement in any civil or criminal actions against the former President or his company. Sonia Moghe, CNN, 20 Dec. 2021 The Court previously refused, by a slim 5-4 vote, to temporarily enjoin enforcement of the Texas law prior to holding a full oral argument on it. Evan Gerstmann, Forbes, 1 Nov. 2021 See More

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

First Known Use of enjoin

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for enjoin

Middle English, from Anglo-French enjoindre, from Latin injungere, from in- + jungere to join — more at yoke

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Last Updated

20 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Enjoin.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/enjoin. Accessed 24 Sep. 2022.

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More Definitions for enjoin


transitive verb
en·​join | \ in-ˈjȯin How to pronounce enjoin (audio) \

Legal Definition of enjoin

: to prohibit by judicial order : issue an injunction against a three-judge district court had enjoined the plans— W. J. Brennan, Jr.

Other Words from enjoin

enjoinable adjective

History and Etymology for enjoin

Anglo-French enjoindre to impose, constrain, from Old French, from Latin injungere to attach, impose, from in- on + jungere to join

More from Merriam-Webster on enjoin

Nglish: Translation of enjoin for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of enjoin for Arabic Speakers

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