- to cut short; cut off a part of; abridge; reduce; diminish.
Origin of curtail1
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
- a horizontal, spiral termination to the lower end of a stair railing.
- Also called curtail step. a starting step having a scroll termination to one or both ends of the tread.
Origin of curtail2
Examples from the Web for curtail
Rail at the bigots in Washington on TV seeking to curtail equality?Dear John, It Gets Better: A Letter to Travolta
July 24, 2014
With the World Cup fast approaching, Brazil is attempting to curtail its controversial soccer fan clubs.The Daily Beast’s Best Longreads, May 31, 2014
May 31, 2014
But it is also time to curtail the demand for ivory in Asia.The Curse of CAR: Warlords, Blood Diamonds, and Dead Elephants
May 25, 2014
The promises of benefit are false, and government action to curtail this kind of fraud is long overdue.FDA Moves to Crack Down on Quack Autism ‘Cures’
April 29, 2014
Bill de Blasio successfully campaigned for mayor on the promise to curtail it.My Patrol With the NYPD’s Bill Bratton
March 14, 2014
I would not wish for a moment to curtail the holy rights of wimmen.Samantha Among the Brethren, Part 5.
Josiah Allen's Wife (Marietta Holley)
To curtail the activities in one is not necessarily a favor to the other.Herbert Hoover
We have lost five days here, and I shall be compelled to curtail my journey.A Mating in the Wilds
And you will forgive me, I am sure, if I curtail our interview.Strictly Business
I have no wish, even if I had the right, to curtail your freedom.Lover or Friend
Rosa Nouchette Carey
- (tr) to cut short; abridge
Word Origin and History for curtail
late 15c., from Middle French courtault "made short," from court "short" (Old French cort, from Latin curtus; see curt) + -ault pejorative suffix of Germanic origin. Originally curtal; used of horses with docked tails, which probably influenced the spelling. Related: Curtailed; curtailing.