obstruct

verb
ob·​struct | \ əb-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce obstruct (audio) , äb-\
obstructed; obstructing; obstructs

Definition of obstruct

transitive verb

1 : to block or close up by an obstacle A piece of food obstructed his airway. The road was obstructed by a fallen tree.
2 : to hinder from passage, action, or operation : impede Constant interruptions obstruct our progress. was charged with obstructing justice by lying to investigators
3 : to cut off from sight A wall obstructs the view.

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Other Words from obstruct

obstructive \ əb-​ˈstrək-​tiv How to pronounce obstructive (audio) , äb-​ \ adjective or noun
obstructiveness noun
obstructor \ əb-​ˈstrək-​tər How to pronounce obstructor (audio) , äb-​ \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for obstruct

hinder, impede, obstruct, block mean to interfere with the activity or progress of. hinder stresses causing harmful or annoying delay or interference with progress. rain hindered the climb impede implies making forward progress difficult by clogging, hampering, or fettering. tight clothing that impedes movement obstruct implies interfering with something in motion or in progress by the sometimes intentional placing of obstacles in the way. the view was obstructed by billboards block implies complete obstruction to passage or progress. a landslide blocked the road

Examples of obstruct in a Sentence

A large tree obstructed the road. A piece of food obstructed his airway and caused him to stop breathing. She was charged with obstructing police. She was charged with obstructing justice by lying to investigators.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In the seven-count indictment, Mr. Stone was also charged with obstructing the congressional inquiry and trying to persuade a witness to lie to a House committee. Shelby Holliday, WSJ, "Judge Orders Roger Stone to Avoid Further Comment on Pending Trial," 21 Feb. 2019 They were charged with obstructing and crowding, according to Capitol Police officials. Gregg Re, Fox News, "Kavanaugh accuser Christine Ford opens door to testifying next week," 20 Sep. 2018 The mother of a person of interest in the disappearance of a west Georgia woman has been charged with obstructing officers, an investigator said. Steve Burns, ajc, "Mother of key figure in missing Georgia woman’s case is charged," 10 July 2018 The 15-year-old was also charged with obstructing police for running from them while trying to resist arrest, a misdemeanor charge, police said. Megan Jones, Aurora Beacon-News, "Aurora teens charged with breaking into vehicles at Fox Valley Mall," 10 July 2018 Aberdeen Police report: Daron Terrell Holland, 28, of the first block of Aberdeen Avenue, was charged Sunday with obstructing and hindering police and fourth-degree burglary. Erika Butler, The Aegis, "Harford County police blotter," 10 May 2018 With dust in the air and thick brush obstructing officers' view, Houk escaped on foot, leaving his two children in the vehicle. Melissa Etehad, latimes.com, "Suspect in motor home chase shaved his beard before attempting to flee on a train, authorities say," 4 May 2018 He was charged with obstructing a public passage, but prosecutors added assault charges. Kevin Litten, NOLA.com, "Frank Scurlock, former New Orleans mayoral candidate, pleads no contest in public masturbation case," 23 Apr. 2018 Salman was charged with providing material support to the Islamic State, a foreign terror organization, and with obstructing justice. Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY, "Widow of Pulse nightclub gunman found innocent of helping plan the attack," 30 Mar. 2018

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

1590, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for obstruct

Latin obstructus, past participle of obstruere, from ob- in the way + struere to build, heap up — more at ob-, strew

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Statistics for obstruct

Last Updated

20 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for obstruct

The first known use of obstruct was in 1590

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More Definitions for obstruct

obstruct

verb

English Language Learners Definition of obstruct

somewhat formal
: to block (something, such as a pipe or street) so that things cannot move through easily
: to slow or block the movement, progress, or action of (something or someone)
: to be in front of (something) : to make (something) difficult to see

obstruct

verb
ob·​struct | \ əb-ˈstrəkt How to pronounce obstruct (audio) \
obstructed; obstructing

Kids Definition of obstruct

1 : to block or make passage through difficult A fallen tree is obstructing the road.
2 : to be or come in the way of : hinder She was uncooperative and obstructed the investigation.
3 : to make (something) difficult to see The new building obstructs their view of the ocean.

obstruct

transitive verb
ob·​struct | \ əb-ˈstrəkt, äb- How to pronounce obstruct (audio) \

Medical Definition of obstruct

: to block or close up by an obstacle veins obstructed by clots

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More from Merriam-Webster on obstruct

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with obstruct

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for obstruct

Spanish Central: Translation of obstruct

Nglish: Translation of obstruct for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of obstruct for Arabic Speakers

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