re·​strict | \ ri-ˈstrikt How to pronounce restrict (audio) \
restricted; restricting; restricts

Definition of restrict

transitive verb

1 : to confine within bounds : restrain
2 : to place under restrictions as to use or distribution

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Synonyms & Antonyms for restrict


cap, circumscribe, confine, hold down, limit



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Choose the Right Synonym for restrict

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 restrict in a Sentence

Her eye problem restricts her reading. She was told to restrict the amount of salt she uses. The new law restricts smoking in public places. They have accused the government of trying to restrict free speech. They say the government is trying to restrict them from speaking out.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Public School has restricted its business to use only dead stock fabrics, and all its many collaborations, from Nike to the NBA, are made in a sustainable manner. Steff Yotka, Vogue, "Where Hype Meets Hygge: Introducing Public School and Eileen Fisher’s Up-Cycled Collaboration," 24 Oct. 2018 Intel has mostly restricted overclocking to its Z370 and Z470 series chipsets, which are far pricier. Gordon Mah Ung, PCWorld, "AMD brings overclocking to the masses with its Ryzen B450 chipset," 31 July 2018 Parks may restrict people with pets to certain campgrounds or campsite areas. Kim Campbell Thornton, sacbee, "Hiking or camping with your dogs? How to keep them safe," 11 July 2018 The Kings are preparing to put together an offer for Celtics restricted free agent Marcus Smart after missing out on Bulls guard Zack LaVine. Scooby Axson,, "NBA Free Agency Rumors: Rockets Lock In On Carmelo; Luc Mbah A Moute to Clippers," 10 July 2018 As the Orlando Magic opened this summer’s NBA free agency period Sunday quietly, two agreements elsewhere in the league seemingly dampened the prospects of Magic restricted free agent Aaron Gordon receiving a major payday. Josh Robbins,, "Orlando Magic quiet on 1st day of free agency," 2 July 2018 Dante Exum, Utah Jazz, restricted: An Australian who has yet to live up to having been chosen fifth overall in 2014. Rick Bonnell, charlotteobserver, "Hornets still have a hole on roster. Here are 6 free agent possibilities to fill it.," 26 June 2018 In its current form, the ban restricts most visa travel by foreign nationals from eight countries. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "The Supreme Court Upholds Presidential Bigotry," 26 June 2018 Together these customs restricted supply, protecting collectors from a flooded market while keeping ultimate jurisdiction over a painter’s career in the hands of his dealer. Stephen Metcalf, The Atlantic, "Jean-Michel Basquiat Is Still an Enigma," 24 June 2018

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

1535, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for restrict

Latin restrictus, past participle of restringere

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Statistics for restrict

Last Updated

19 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for restrict

The first known use of restrict was in 1535

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More Definitions for restrict



English Language Learners Definition of restrict

: to limit the amount or range of (something)
: to prevent (someone) from doing something
: to allow (someone) to only have or do a particular thing


re·​strict | \ ri-ˈstrikt How to pronounce restrict (audio) \
restricted; restricting

Kids Definition of restrict

: to keep within bounds : set limits to


transitive verb

Legal Definition of restrict

1 : to subject to bounds or limits restrict the height of buildings restrict visitation rights
2 : to place under restrictions as to use or distribution restricted the land to recreational use

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More from Merriam-Webster on restrict

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with restrict

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for restrict

Spanish Central: Translation of restrict

Nglish: Translation of restrict for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of restrict for Arabic Speakers

Comments on restrict

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marked by a state of overwhelming emotion

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