A limit is a boundary, or how far something can go, or the maximum amount of something. When you reach the limit, imagine a little sign saying "the end."

There's a limit to how much weight you can lift, how many words can be written in an hour, or how long someone can stay awake. Once you pass the city limits, you have left town. Sporting events have time limits. As a verb, you can limit how much chocolate your kids are allowed to eat. And if you don't feel like writing much, you'll limit your essay to just 400 words instead of 500.

Definitions of limit

n as far as something can go

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the point on a curve where the tangent changes from positive on the left to negative on the right
the point on a curve where the tangent changes from negative on the left to positive on the right
range, reach
the limits within which something can be effective
earreach, earshot, hearing
the range within which a voice can be heard
eyeshot, view
the range of the eye
rifle range, rifle shot
the distance that a rifle bullet will carry
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the outermost or farthest region or point

n final or latest limiting point

terminal point, terminus ad quem
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end, ending
the point in time at which something ends

n the greatest amount of something that is possible or allowed

“there are limits on the amount you can bet”
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extremum, peak
the most extreme possible amount or value
a designated limit beyond which something cannot function or must be terminated
lower limit, minimum
the smallest possible quantity
maximum, upper limit
the largest possible quantity
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indefinite quantity
an estimated quantity

n the mathematical value toward which a function goes as the independent variable approaches infinity

limit point, point of accumulation
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indefinite quantity
an estimated quantity

n the greatest possible degree of something

“to the limit of his ability”
bound, boundary
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a narrow boundary
absoluteness, starkness, utterness
the quality of being complete or utter or extreme
heat barrier, thermal barrier
a limit to high speed flight imposed by aerodynamic heating
level best, maximum, utmost, uttermost
the greatest possible degree
brink, verge
the limit beyond which something happens or changes
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the distance or area or volume over which something extends

n the boundary of a specific area

demarcation, demarcation line
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the outside limit of an object or area or surface; a place farthest away from the center of something
city limit, city limits
the limits of the area occupied by a city or town
upper limit
the limit on the upper (or northernmost) side of something
lower limit
the limit on the lower (or southernmost) side of something
three-mile limit
the limit of a nation's territorial waters
a strip forming the outer edge of something
the edge of a piece of cloth; especially the finished edge that has been doubled under and stitched down
(nautical) the forward edge of a fore-and-aft sail that is next to the mast
border, molding, moulding
a decorative recessed or relieved surface on an edge
selvage, selvedge
the edge of a fabric that is woven so that it will not ravel or fray
berm, shoulder
a narrow edge of land (usually unpaved) along the side of a road
roadside, wayside
edge of a way or road or path
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bound, boundary, bounds
the line or plane indicating the limit or extent of something

v restrict or confine, "I limit you to two visits to the pub a day"

circumscribe, confine
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hold down
keep down, number
place a limit on the number of
restrict the number or amount of
curb, curtail, cut back, restrict
place restrictions on
delimit, delimitate, demarcate
set, mark, or draw the boundaries of something
satisfy in a limited way
restrict the consumption of a relatively scarce commodity, as during war
lessen, diminish, or curtail
immobilise, immobilize
cause to be unable to move
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decrease, lessen, minify
make smaller

v decide upon or fix definitely

define, determine, fix, set, specify
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use as a quantifier
mention and identify by name
set anew
give a definition for the meaning of a word
give a new or different definition of (a word)
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choose, pick out, select, take
pick out, select, or choose from a number of alternatives

v place limits on (extent or access)

limit the time you can spend with your friends”
bound, confine, restrain, restrict, throttle, trammel
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reduce, tighten
narrow or limit
limit or restrict to
restrict (school boys') movement to the dormitory or campus as a means of punishment
draw a line, draw the line
reasonably object (to) or set a limit (on)
mark off, mark out
set boundaries to and delimit
harness, rein, rule
keep in check
baffle, regulate
check the emission of (sound)
cramp, halter, hamper, strangle
prevent the progress or free movement of
constrain, stiffen, tighten, tighten up
clamp down, crack down
repress or suppress (something regarded as undesirable)
limit the range or extent of
constrain, cumber, encumber, restrain
hold back
put a bridle on
keep to the curb
impede the motion of, as with a chain or a burden
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check, contain, control, curb, hold, hold in, moderate
lessen the intensity of; temper; hold in restraint; hold or keep within limits