- part of the tack or harness of a horse, consisting usually of a headstall, bit, and reins.
- anything that restrains or curbs: His common sense is a bridle to his quick temper.
- Machinery. a link, flange, or other attachment for limiting the movement of any part of a machine.
- Nautical. a rope or chain secured at both ends to an object to be held, lifted, or towed, and itself held or lifted by a rope or chain secured at its center.
- a raising up of the head, as in disdain.
- to put a bridle on.
- to control or hold back; restrain; curb.
- to draw up the head and draw in the chin, as in disdain or resentment.
Origin of bridle
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for bridling
"Drink or no drink," said Gloria, with a bridling of her head.Gloria and Treeless Street
Annie Hamilton Donnell
I 'aven't come to sharin' my butler's 'ouse,' said Mrs Clay, bridling.Sarah's School Friend
"It's our business what we do with her after we pay our money," declared Fogg, bridling.Blow The Man Down
"I'm sure I don't know what makes you think so," she answered, bridling a little.The Hero
William Somerset Maugham
Out in the clearing, a man was bridling a tall buckskin horse.The Gold Girl
James B. Hendryx
- a headgear for a horse, etc, consisting of a series of buckled straps and a metal mouthpiece (bit) by which the animal is controlled through the reins
- something that curbs or restrains; check
- a Y-shaped cable, rope, or chain, used for holding, towing, etc
- machinery a device by which the motion of a component is limited, often in the form of a linkage or flange
- (tr) to put a bridle on (a horse, mule, etc)
- (intr) (of a horse) to respond correctly to the pull of the reins
- (tr) to restrain; curbhe bridled his rage
- (intr often foll by at) to show anger, scorn, or indignation
Word Origin and History for bridling
Old English bridel "bridle, rein, curb, restraint," related to bregdan "move quickly," from Proto-Germanic *bregdilaz (see braid (v.)).
"to control, dominate," c.1200, from Old English bridlian "to fit with a bridle," from bridel (see bridle (n.)). Meaning "to throw up the head" (as a horse does when reined in) is from mid-15c. Related: Bridled; bridling.