prohibit

verb pro·hib·it \ prō-ˈhi-bət , prə- \
Updated on: 7 Nov 2017

Definition of prohibit

transitive verb
1 : to forbid by authority : enjoin
2 a : to prevent from doing something
b : preclude

Examples of prohibit in a Sentence

  1. The rules prohibit dating a coworker.

  2. The prison's electric fence prohibits escape.

Recent Examples of prohibit from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of prohibit

Middle English, from Latin prohibitus, past participle of prohibēre to keep off, from pro- forward + habēre to hold — more at pro-, give

Synonym Discussion of prohibit

forbid, prohibit, interdict, inhibit mean to debar one from doing something or to order that something not be done. forbid implies that the order is from one in authority and that obedience is expected.
    • smoking is forbidden in the building
prohibit suggests the issuing of laws, statutes, or regulations.
    • prohibited the sale of liquor
interdict implies prohibition by civil or ecclesiastical authority usually for a given time or a declared purpose.
    • practices interdicted by the church
inhibit implies restraints or restrictions that amount to prohibitions, not only by authority but also by the exigencies of the time or situation.
    • conditions inhibiting the growth of free trade

PROHIBIT Defined for English Language Learners

prohibit

verb

Definition of prohibit for English Language Learners

  • : to order (someone) not to use or do something

  • : to say that (something) is not allowed

  • : to make (something) impossible to do


PROHIBIT Defined for Kids

prohibit

verb pro·hib·it \ prō-ˈhi-bət \

Definition of prohibit for Students

prohibited; prohibiting
1 : to forbid by authority
  • Parking is prohibited.
2 : to make impossible
  • The high walls prohibit escape.


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