Also found in: Thesaurus, Legal, Encyclopedia.


tr.v. re·strained, re·strain·ing, re·strains
a. To hold back or keep in check; control: was able restrain his emotions.
b. To prevent (a person or group) from doing something or acting in a certain way: She was restrained from selling the house by her fond memories.
2. To hold, fasten, or secure so as to prevent or limit movement: hair restrained by a bandana; a child restrained by a seat belt.

[Middle English restreinen, from Old French restraindre, restreign-, from Latin restringere, to bind back; see restrict.]

re·strain′a·ble adj.
re·strain′ed·ly (-strā′nĭd-lē) adv.
re·strain′er n.
Synonyms: restrain, curb, check, bridle, inhibit
These verbs mean to hold back or keep under control. Restrain implies restriction or limitation, as on one's freedom of action: "a wise and frugal government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another" (Thomas Jefferson).
To curb is to restrain as if with reins: "As a teacher he was rather dull. He curbed his own enthusiasms, finding that they distracted his attention" (E.M. Forster).
Check implies arresting or stopping, often suddenly: "Knowing that Lily disliked to be caressed, she had long ago learned to check her demonstrative impulses toward her friend" (Edith Wharton).
To bridle is often to hold in or govern one's emotions or passions: I tried hard to bridle my anger. Inhibit usually connotes a check on one's actions, thoughts, or emotions: A fear of strangers inhibited his ability to travel.
Mentioned in ?
References in periodicals archive ?
Prof English added: "The fact the PSNI has responded so restrainedly to republican and loyalist provocation in recent years has meant the support levels for violent groups have not increased as they would have done with police over-reaction.
265) The good judge in a constitutional case is the one who judges pragmatically or restrainedly.
How receptive a Jew's regular environment is can make the difference between a Jewish student coming back from a Jewish event and either restrainedly saying "I was at this Jewish thing.
As a single working woman, exploring the beaches and nightclubs of San Juan unaccompanied by older family members, Rodriguez may well have seemed fair sexual game to the professional men whose masculine social prowess depended upon developing sexual affairs with women of lower social classes, while publicly and more restrainedly courting "marriageable" women from their own social networks.