Definition of obstruct
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.
obstructiveplay \əb-ˈstrək-tiv, äb-\ adjective or noun
obstructorplay \əb-ˈstrək-tər, äb-\ noun
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.
Recent Examples of obstruct from the Web
Most such deaths involve suffocation, where a baby's airway was obstructed.
A lack of understanding is not an excuse to obstruct outstanding journalism.
He was charged in September 2014 with assault, failure to obey a lawful police order and obstructing and hindering police, according to online court records.
Snyder received an additional bribery indictment for allegedly accepting $13,000 in connection with a board of works contract, and allegedly obstructing Internal Revenue Service laws.
That probe is expected to explore the circumstances of Trump’s firing of Comey on May 9 and whether that dismissal was an attempt to obstruct the Russia probe.
He also is charged misdemeanor counts of possession of a firearm without a valid FOID card, possession of ammunition without a FOID card, and obstructing identification.
Seven months later, she was charged with obstructing a federal investigation, and aiding and abetting by providing material support to Mateen.
Such a request might be construed as an effort to obstruct justice; CIA officials are bound by law to report potential crimes to the FBI.
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.
Synonym Discussion of obstruct
OBSTRUCT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of obstruct for English Language Learners
: 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 Defined for Kids
Definition of obstruct for Students
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.
Word Root of obstruct
The Latin word struere, meaning “to build,” and its form structus give us the root struct. Words from the Latin struere have something to do with building. A structure is something that was built, such as a house. To construct is to build by combining parts together. To obstruct is to build an obstacle that blocks a passage or path. Destruction is the process of taking apart something that was built.
Medical Definition of obstruct
: to block or close up by an obstacle veins obstructed by clots
Seen and Heard
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