[ awf-lim-its, of- ]
/ ˈɔfˈlɪm ɪts, ˈɒf- /
forbidden to be patronized, frequented, used, etc., by certain persons: The tavern is off-limits to soldiers.
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restricted, banned, illegal, barred, illicit, contraband, prohibited, unthinkable, outlawed, embargo, restriction, proscription, exclusion, constraint, veto, injunction, taboo, prevention, refusal, prohibition
Origin of off-limits
An Americanism dating back to 1950–55
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019
adjective (off-limits when prenominal)
not to be entered; out of bounds
in or into an area forbidden by regulations
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
"forbidden," by 1881, U.S. military academies jargon, from off (adv.) + limit (n.). Earlier (1857) it was applied to cadets, etc., who were in violation of the limitations on their movement and behavior.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper