or red-line

[verb red-lahyn; noun red-lahyn]

verb (used with object), red·lined, red·lin·ing.

verb (used without object), red·lined, red·lin·ing.

to engage in redlining.


  1. the maximum rotational speed, or angular velocity, of the engine crankshaft that is considered safe: often measured in rpm.
  2. a red line or boundary of a red area that delineates such a value, as on a tachometer.

Origin of redline

First recorded in 1940–45; red1 + line1
Related formsred·lin·er, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for red-lined

Historical Examples of red-lined

  • Barbara and Reynold were apart from all the rest in the square, red-lined pew which had always belonged to the Rothwells.

  • He was about to fire, when one of the Indians in the hole below spotted the red-lined coat.

    An Autobiography of Buffalo Bill (Colonel W. F. Cody)

    Buffalo Bill (William Frederick Cody)

  • Now and then a pale nurse, dressed in white, with white helmet and red-lined parasol would walk through the throng.

    In Mesopotamia

    Martin Swayne

  • Mr. Dunbar took his faithful friend—his short pipe—from its red-lined case, filled it with tobacco, and began to draw luxuriously.

    Peter and Jane

    S. (Sarah) Macnaughtan

  • He lay in uniform, upon the red-lined cloak, his plumed hat beside him, his sword in his hand.

    The Long Roll

    Mary Johnston

British Dictionary definitions for red-lined


verb (tr)

(esp of a bank or group of banks) to refuse a loan to (a person or country) because of the presumed risks involved
to restrict people's access to goods or services on the basis of the area in which they live
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 red-lined



also red-line, "mark in red ink," 1820, from red (adj.1) + line (v.). Specific sense of "deny loans to certain neighborhoods based on ethnicity" is from 1973, on notion of lines drawn on maps. Used earlier in reference to insurance company practices (1961) and in World War II military slang in reference to a red line drawn through a soldier's name for some infraction, thus denying his pay. Related: Redlined; redlining.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper