View synonyms for quarantine


[ kwawr-uhn-teen, kwor-, kwawr-uhn-teen, kwor- ]


  1. a strict isolation imposed to prevent the spread of disease.
  2. a period, originally 40 days, of detention or isolation imposed upon ships, persons, animals, or plants on arrival at a port or place, when suspected of carrying some infectious or contagious disease.
  3. a system of measures maintained by governmental authority at ports, frontiers, etc., for preventing the spread of disease.
  4. the branch of the governmental service concerned with such measures.
  5. a place or station at which such measures are carried out, as a special port or dock where ships are detained.
  6. the detention or isolation enforced.
  7. the place, especially a hospital, where people are detained.
  8. a period of 40 days.
  9. social, political, or economic isolation imposed as a punishment, as in ostracizing an individual or enforcing sanctions against a foreign state.

verb (used with object)

, quar·an·tined, quar·an·tin·ing.
  1. to put in or subject to quarantine.
  2. to exclude, detain, or isolate for political, social, or hygienic reasons.


/ ˈkwɒrənˌtiːn /


  1. a period of isolation or detention, esp of persons or animals arriving from abroad, to prevent the spread of disease, usually consisting of the maximum known incubation period of the suspected disease
  2. the place or area where such detention is enforced
  3. any period or state of enforced isolation
“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


  1. to isolate in or as if in quarantine
  2. to withhold (a portion of a welfare payment) from a person or group of people
“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


  1. The isolation of people who either have a contagious disease or have been exposed to one, in an attempt to prevent the spread of the disease.

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The term is sometimes used politically to designate the political and economic isolation of a nation in retribution for unacceptable policies: “When Iraq invaded Kuwait , it was placed in quarantine by the nations of the world.”
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Other Words From

  • quaran·tina·ble adjective
  • quaran·tiner noun
  • pre·quaran·tine noun verb (used with object) prequarantined prequarantining
  • un·quaran·tined adjective
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Word History and Origins

Origin of quarantine1

First recorded in 1600–10; from Italian quarantina, variant of quarantena, originally Upper Italian (Venetian): “period of forty days, group of forty,” derivative of quaranta “forty,” ultimately from Latin quadrāgintā
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Word History and Origins

Origin of quarantine1

C17: from Italian quarantina period of forty days, from quaranta forty, from Latin quadrāgintā
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Example Sentences

As experts point out, a person who can fly to another country for a vaccine is also a person most likely able to withstand a few more months of quarantine.

From Vox

Bypassing the quarantine through advance testing has begun to reverse the trend — Maui visitorship in December was about one-third of normal.

A member of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg’s security detail tested positive for the coronavirus Monday, sending Buttigieg into a 14-day quarantine less than a week after being sworn in.

But, in new research conducted with Digiday, surveying more than 200 senior marketers in Europe, 58% of brands say they saw increased creativity in their in-house teams during a time of quarantine.

From Digiday

They made just one small slip-up after what they described as months of “torturous” quarantine.

AIDS insanity:  When running for the US Senate in 1992, Huckabee called for a quarantine of people who had AIDS.

Adding an extra three weeks of quarantine on to every trip makes it hard to fit this coverage into our lives.

But the secrecy and fear surrounding the once-successful quarantine has now put the region in even greater danger.

The quarantine had either failed by then, or did shortly after.

But the quarantine, lifted just 10 days in, was a colossal failure.

The infection of the eye is very severe and dangerous, and the usual quarantine is to be observed.

The climax to all of our troubles was the making out of our declaration and being held in quarantine at Ellis Island.

In 1890 cholera appeared in Tripoli and all steamers stopped calling at the port, to avoid quarantine.

Martha's pencil followed the list down, making a light check after the name while she dialed quarantine to send in the man.

All I can say is that full quarantine measures are now in force as of fifteen minutes ago.


Related Words




quar.quarantine anchorage