[ ri-streynd ]
/ rɪˈstreɪnd /


characterized by restraint: The actor gave a restrained performance.

Origin of restrained

First recorded in 1570–80; restrain + -ed2

Related forms

re·strain·ed·ly, adverbnon·re·strained, adjective

Definition for restrained (2 of 3)


[ ree-streyn ]
/ riˈstreɪn /

verb (used with or without object)

to strain again.

Origin of re-strain

First recorded in 1870–75; re- + strain1

Can be confused

re-strain restrain

Definition for restrained (3 of 3)


[ ri-streyn ]
/ rɪˈstreɪn /

verb (used with object)

to hold back from action; keep in check or under control; repress: to restrain one's temper.
to deprive of liberty, as by arrest or the like.
to limit or hamper the activity, growth, or effect of: to restrain trade with Cuba.

Origin of restrain

1350–1400; Middle English restreynen < Middle French restreindre < Latin restringere to bind back, bind fast, equivalent to re- re- + stringere to draw together; see strain1

Related forms

Can be confused

refrain restrainre-strain restrain

Synonym study

1. See check1. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for restrained

British Dictionary definitions for restrained (1 of 2)


/ (rɪˈstreɪnd) /


(of a person or person's manner) calm and unemotional
(of clothes, décor, etc) subtle and tasteful

Derived Forms

restrainedly (rɪˈstreɪnɪdlɪ), adverb

British Dictionary definitions for restrained (2 of 2)


/ (rɪˈstreɪn) /

verb (tr)

to hold (someone) back from some action, esp by force
to deprive (someone) of liberty, as by imprisonment
to limit or restrict

Derived Forms

restrainable, adjective

Word Origin for restrain

C14 restreyne, from Old French restreindre, from Latin rēstringere to draw back tightly, from re- + stringere to draw, bind; see strain 1
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