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curtail

1
[ ker-teyl ]
/ kərˈteɪl /
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See synonyms for: curtail / curtailed / curtailing / curtailment on Thesaurus.com

verb (used with object)

to cut short; cut off a part of; abridge; reduce; diminish.

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Origin of curtail

1
First recorded in 1425–75; late Middle English curtailen “to restrict” (said of royal succession or inheritance), probably a conflation of Middle French courtau(l)d (see curtal) and Middle English taillen “to cut” (see taille, tailor1)
See shorten.

Definition for curtail (2 of 2)

curtail2
[ kur-teyl ]
/ ˈkɜrˌteɪl /

noun Architecture.

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 curtail

2
Probably alteration, by folk etymology, of curtal
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

British Dictionary definitions for curtail

curtail
/ (kɜːˈteɪl) /

verb

(tr) to cut short; abridge
curtailer, nouncurtailment, noun
C16: changed (through influence of tail 1) from obsolete curtal to dock; see curtal
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
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