constrain

[kuhn-streyn]

verb (used with object)

to force, compel, or oblige: He was constrained to admit the offense.
to confine forcibly, as by bonds.
to repress or restrain: Cold weather constrained the plant's growth.

Nearby words

  1. constitutionality,
  2. constitutionalize,
  3. constitutionally,
  4. constitutive,
  5. constr.,
  6. constrained,
  7. constraint,
  8. constrict,
  9. constriction,
  10. constriction ring

Origin of constrain

1275–1325; Middle English constrei(g)nen < Anglo-French, Middle French constrei(g)n- (stem of constreindre) < Latin constringere. See con-, strain1

Related forms
Can be confusedcoerce compel constrain force oblige

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for constrain


British Dictionary definitions for constrain

constrain

verb (tr)

to compel or force, esp by persuasion, circumstances, etc; oblige
to restrain by or as if by force; confine
Derived Formsconstrainer, noun

Word Origin for constrain

C14: from Old French constreindre, from Latin constringere to bind together, from stringere to bind

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for constrain

constrain

v.

early 14c., constreyen, from stem of Old French constreindre (Modern French contraindre) "restrain, control," from Latin constringere "to bind together, tie tightly, fetter, shackle, chain," from com- "together" (see com-) + stringere "to draw tight" (see strain (v.)). Related: Constrained; constraining.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper