restraint

noun
re·​straint | \ ri-ˈstrānt How to pronounce restraint (audio) \

Definition of restraint

1a : an act of restraining : the state of being restrained
b(1) : a means of restraining : a restraining force or influence
(2) : a device that restricts movement a restraint for children riding in cars
2 : a control over the expression of one's emotions or thoughts

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Examples of restraint in a Sentence

Make sure the child safety restraint is in place. The prisoner was placed in restraints. His angry response showed a lack of restraint. The government has acted with restraint in dealing with this crisis.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Judicial restraint is a virtue more honored in the breach. Adam J. White, WSJ, "‘Oliver Wendell Holmes’ Review: The Maximal Minimalist," 24 May 2019 Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley and others certainly want to show restraint and caution to avoid the appearance that the accuser Christine Blasey Ford is being dismissed. Chris Stirewalt, Fox News, "Will a justice delayed be a justice denied?," 19 Sep. 2018 The hospital also didn’t take patients out of restraints as soon as possible — the case for two of six patients reviewed. Washington Post, "US: Care lacking at troubled Washington psychiatric hospital," 27 June 2018 British Prime Minister Theresa May urged her European Union counterparts to show restraint when retaliating against U.S. tariffs on European steel and aluminum, saying any action should comply with World Trade Organization rules. Kitty Donaldson, Bloomberg.com, "U.K.'s May Urges Restraint by EU Counterparts on Tariff Response," 7 June 2018 However, the couple clearly showed restraint, as Jenner was photographed entering her hotel alone at the painfully early hour of 4 a.m. So does this mean Jenner isn’t dating NBA star Ben Simmons, with whom she was spotted just last week? Amanda Arnold, The Cut, "Kendall Jenner Got Caught Making Out With Anwar Hadid," 5 June 2018 Fletcher, showing great restraint, did not eject either. Anthony Fenech, Detroit Free Press, "#RallyGoose Detroit Tigers win 4th straight, 7-4, over Toronto Blue Jays," 2 June 2018 Porter said prohibiting the use of restraints does not jeopardize safety. Sandra Gomez-aceves, courant.com, "Bill Would Provide Fair Treatment For Incarcerated Women, Advocates Say," 28 Mar. 2018 Modern civilisation has not shown much restraint in the use of technologies which make extracting resources from the earth or the seas easier, as the current overfishing crisis shows. The Economist, "Sing a song of sonar," 10 Mar. 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for restraint

Middle English, from Anglo-French restreinte, from restreindre

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Statistics for restraint

Last Updated

13 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for restraint

The first known use of restraint was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for restraint

restraint

noun

English Language Learners Definition of restraint

somewhat formal : a way of limiting, controlling, or stopping something
formal : a device that limits a person's movement
: control over your emotions or behavior

restraint

noun
re·​straint | \ ri-ˈstrānt How to pronounce restraint (audio) \

Kids Definition of restraint

1 : the act of stopping or holding back : the state of being stopped or held back
2 : a force or influence that stops or holds back
3 : control over thoughts or feelings You're angry, but show restraint.

restraint

noun
re·​straint | \ ri-ˈstrānt How to pronounce restraint (audio) \

Medical Definition of restraint

: a device that restricts movement restraints such as straitjackets for violent patients

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restraint

noun
re·​straint | \ ri-ˈstrānt How to pronounce restraint (audio) \

Legal Definition of restraint

1a : an act or fact of restraining — see also prior restraint
b : the state of being restrained
2a : a means of restraining
b : a device that restricts movement (as of prisoners or violent psychiatric patients)

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Comments on restraint

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