limit

noun
lim·​it | \ ˈli-mət How to pronounce limit (audio) \

Definition of limit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : something that bounds, restrains, or confines the age limit for junior golf
b : the utmost extent pushed her body to the limit
2a : a geographic or political boundary
b limits plural : the place enclosed within a boundary : bounds into the limits of the North they came— John Milton
3 : limitation the sadness is without limit— William Shakespeare
4 : a determining feature or differentia in logic
5 : a prescribed maximum or minimum amount, quantity, or number: such as
a : the maximum quantity of game or fish that may be taken legally in a specified period
b : a maximum established for a gambling bet, raise, or payoff
6a : a number whose numerical difference from a mathematical function is arbitrarily small for all values of the independent variables that are sufficiently close to but not equal to given prescribed numbers or that are sufficiently large positively or negatively
b : a number that for an infinite sequence of numbers is such that ultimately each of the remaining terms of the sequence differs from this number by less than any given positive amount
7 : something that is exasperating or intolerable We've had bad weather, but this is the limit.

limit

verb
limited; limiting; limits

Definition of limit (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to assign certain limits to : prescribe reserved the right to limit use of the land
2a : to restrict the bounds or limits of the specialist can no longer limit himself to his specialty
b : to curtail or reduce in quantity or extent we must limit the power of aggressors

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Other Words from limit

Noun

limitless \ ˈli-​mət-​ləs How to pronounce limitless (audio) \ adjective
limitlessly adverb
limitlessness noun

Verb

limitable \ ˈli-​mə-​tə-​bəl How to pronounce limitable (audio) \ adjective
limiter noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for limit

Synonyms: Noun

bound, boundary, cap, ceiling, confines, end, extent, limitation, line, termination

Synonyms: Verb

cap, circumscribe, confine, hold down, restrict

Antonyms: Verb

exceed

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Choose the Right Synonym for limit

Verb

limit, restrict, circumscribe, confine mean to set bounds for. limit implies setting a point or line (as in time, space, speed, or degree) beyond which something cannot or is not permitted to go. visits are limited to 30 minutes restrict suggests a narrowing or tightening or restraining within or as if within an encircling boundary. laws intended to restrict the freedom of the press circumscribe stresses a restriction on all sides and by clearly defined boundaries. the work of the investigating committee was carefully circumscribed confine suggests severe restraint and a resulting cramping, fettering, or hampering. our choices were confined by finances

Examples of limit in a Sentence

Noun

He has reached the limit of his endurance. In training, she pushed her body to its physical limits. He tries to be creative within the limits of conventional journalism. There are limits to what I can put up with from him!

Verb

We need to find ways to limit expenses. He tried to limit the damage to his reputation by blaming other people. A factor limiting our country's economic performance is its lack of resources. Our lack of money limits our options. Because of our lack of money, we have to limit ourselves to fewer options.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

But there was no such limit placed on book commercials. Maude Campbell, Popular Mechanics, "Yo, Joe: How a 12-Inch Soldier Doll Became a Toy Legend," 9 Apr. 2019 Again, Dewey put it well: There is no limit to the intellectual endowment which may proceed from the flow of social intelligence when that circulates by word of mouth from one to another in the communications of the local community. Sean Illing, Vox, "Intellectuals have said democracy is failing for a century. They were wrong.," 20 Dec. 2018 The service costs £7.99 (about $10.19) per month, with no limit to the number of deliveries. Sean O'kane, The Verge, "Starship’s robots can now deliver packages, too," 31 Oct. 2018 Aliens from Toy Story The good thing about this one is that there is no limit on how many friends can join in on this costume – just beware of the claw. 12. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "36 Halloween Disney Costumes You And Your BFFs Can Pull Off," 16 Aug. 2018 There is no minimum-size limit, but all bass from 14 to 18 inches in length must be released. Paul A. Smith, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Smith: Retro outing proves fishing fun - and gear - is timeless," 14 July 2018 Twenty-seven is still young in reproductive terms—fertility doesn’t begin to enter the danger zone until your mid-30s—but many women, especially in big cities, are pushing the limits, getting closer and closer to the reproductive fringes. Macaela Mackenzie, Glamour, "Women Are Waiting Longer than Ever to Get Pregnant—Do You Have A Plan for Your Fertility?," 22 Apr. 2019 But throughout its four seasons, the show has pushed the limits of genre storytelling and dabbled with its own magic, going where few series have gone before. Gabe Bergado, Teen Vogue, ""The Magicians" Finale Just Pulled Off Its Most Heart-wrenching Risk Yet," 18 Apr. 2019 Only the best of the best can withstand the physically demanding tasks and dramatic tribe alliances that make up Survivor, but one recent challenge pushed season 38 contestant Lauren O'Connell to the limit. Blair Donovan, Country Living, "'Survivor' Sparks Controversy for the Show's Reaction to Lauren O'Connell's Scary Fall," 4 Apr. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Researchers also found that kidney failure was not limited to any particular dog breed or gender, and was present in dogs who consumed as little as 1.5 oz. of grapes. Yvette Manes, Woman's Day, "The Scary Reason You Shouldn’t Feed Your Dogs Grapes," 7 May 2019 Million-dollar neighborhoods aren’t limited to California. Patrick Sisson, Curbed, "The number of ‘million-dollar neighborhoods’ in the U.S. has doubled," 9 Nov. 2018 Searching doesn't limit itself to computer screens, either, and its visual innovations are matched by a suspenseful story with some unexpected twists. Sam Machkovech And Nathan Mattise, Ars Technica, "Films for the discerning nerd: Ars picks the best of 2018," 27 Dec. 2018 Of course, that's not to say pregnancy has to limit you as a traveler, in fact our two guests this week prove the very opposite. Condé Nast Traveler, "Two Super-Travelers on Everywhere They Went While Pregnant," 5 Nov. 2018 Newport News and Norfolk, Virginia limit it to kids 12 and younger, or seventh grade and under. Megan Friedman, House Beautiful, "A Town in Virginia Has Set A Strict Age Limit For Trick-or-Treaters," 11 Oct. 2018 So explosive, in fact, its taking steps to limit visitors. Elise Taylor, Vogue, "The Game of Thrones Filming Locations You Can Visit In Real Life," 10 Apr. 2019 Intel made the baffling decision to limit Optane Memory compatibility to systems configured with pricier Core processors. Brad Chacos, PCWorld, "Intel's Optane Memory finally supports Celeron and Pentium budget PCs that need the most boost," 1 Apr. 2019 That works fine for fresh water, but saltwater is trickier because of its ability to corrode electrodes with chloride, which would limit a system's lifespan. David Grossman, Popular Mechanics, "Scientists Are Now Transforming Saltwater Into Hydrogen Fuel," 20 Mar. 2019

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

Noun

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

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for limit

Noun and Verb

Middle English, from Anglo-French limite, from Latin limit-, limes boundary

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Learn More about limit

Dictionary Entries near limit

liminal

liminary

liminess

limit

limitarian

limitary

limitation

Statistics for limit

Last Updated

19 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for limit

The first known use of limit was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for limit

limit

noun

English Language Learners Definition of limit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a point beyond which it is not possible to go
: a point beyond which someone is not allowed to go
: an amount or number that is the highest or lowest allowed

limit

verb

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

: to stop or prevent an increase in (something) : to keep (something) from becoming greater
: to prevent (something) from being larger, longer, more, etc. : to place a limit on the size or extent of (something)
: to stop (someone) from having or doing more : to place a limit on (someone)

limit

noun
lim·​it | \ ˈli-mət How to pronounce limit (audio) \

Kids Definition of limit

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a point beyond which it is impossible to go She runs often, but she knows her limits.
2 : an amount or number that is the lowest or highest allowed After I spent my limit, I went home.
3 : a boundary line the city limits

limit

verb
limited; limiting

Kids Definition of limit (Entry 2 of 2)

: to place a control on the size or extent of something I need to limit expenses.

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More from Merriam-Webster on limit

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for limit

Spanish Central: Translation of limit

Nglish: Translation of limit for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of limit for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about limit

Comments on limit

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