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tr.v. con·tained, con·tain·ing, con·tains
a. To have within; hold: a bin that contains rice.
b. To be capable of holding: These barrels contain 50 gallons.
2. To have as a component or constituent part; include: Does the soup contain meat? The poem contains many famous lines.
a. To hold or keep within limits; restrain: I could hardly contain my curiosity.
b. To halt the spread or development of; check: Science sought an effective method of containing the disease.
4. To check the expansion or influence of (a hostile power or ideology) by containment.
5. Mathematics To be exactly divisible by.

[Middle English conteinen, from Old French contenir, from Latin continēre : com-, com- + tenēre, to hold; see ten- in Indo-European roots.]

con·tain′a·ble adj.
Synonyms: contain, hold1, accommodate
These verbs mean to have or be able to have within. Contain means to have within or have as a part or constituent: The box contained emergency medical supplies. The book contains some amusing passages.
Hold stresses capacity for containing: The gas tank holds 15 gallons when full.
Accommodate refers to capacity for holding comfortably: The restaurant accommodates 50 customers.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


kept from going beyond certain limits; confined
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014



showing restraint or calmness; controlled.
con•tain′ed•ly, adv.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adj.1.contained - gotten under control; "the oil spill is contained"
controlled - restrained or managed or kept within certain bounds; "controlled emotions"; "the controlled release of water from reservoirs"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
References in classic literature ?
Reservoirs firmly fixed contained water and the necessary provisions; and fire and light were procurable by means of gas, contained in a special reservoir under a pressure of several atmospheres.
The Parable is the designed use of language purposely intended to convey a hidden and secret meaning other than that contained in the words themselves; and which may or may not bear a special reference to the hearer, or reader.
Planudes may have invented some few fables, or have inserted some that were current in his day; but there is an abundance of unanswerable internal evidence to prove that he had an acquaintance with the veritable fables of Aesop, although the versions he had access to were probably corrupt, as contained in the various translations and disquisitional exercises of the rhetoricians and philosophers.
The dynamic elements in an emotion, if we are right in our analysis, contain, from our point of view, no ingredients beyond those contained in the processes considered in Lecture III.
Although the cell was large, we had evidently consumed a great part of the oxygen that it contained. Indeed, each man consumes, in one hour, the oxygen contained in more than 176 pints of air, and this air, charged (as then) with a nearly equal quantity of carbonic acid, becomes unbreathable.
Would he obtain air by chemical means, in getting by heat the oxygen contained in chlorate of potash, and in absorbing carbonic acid by caustic potash?
By giving the balloon these cubic dimensions, and filling it with hydrogen gas, instead of common air--the former being fourteen and a half times lighter and weighing therefore only two hundred and seventy-six pounds--a difference of three thousand seven hundred and twenty-four pounds in equilibrium is produced; and it is this difference between the weight of the gas contained in the balloon and the weight of the surrounding atmosphere that constitutes the ascensional force of the former.
His external balloon, which had the dimensions given above, contained a less one of the same shape, which was only forty-five feet in horizontal, and sixty-eight feet in vertical diameter.
The chest was not locked, so he opened it and was almost dazzled by the brilliance of the rich jewels it contained. After admiring the pretty things, he took out a fine golden watch with a big chain, several handsome finger-rings, and an ornament of rubies to pin upon the breast of his shaggy shirt-bosom.
Of the two shorter walls, one contained the door in grooves which I have already mentioned as communicating with the front room; the other was almost entirely occupied by the broad window which looked out on the courtyard.
The drawers beneath contained nothing but cards, and the usual counters and markers.
But the mysteries of nature are incomprehensible, and there are certain invitations contained in even the coarsest food which appeal very irresistibly to a fasting stomach.