curtail

To curtail something is to slow it down, put restrictions on it, or stop it entirely. If I give up cake, I am curtailing my cake-eating.

Curtail is an official-sounding word for stopping or slowing things down. The police try to curtail crime — they want there to be less crime in the world. A company may want to curtail their employees' computer time, so they spend more time working and less time goofing around. Teachers try to curtail whispering and note-passing in class. When something is curtailed, it's either stopped entirely or stopped quite a bit — it's cut short.

Definitions of curtail
  1. verb
    terminate or abbreviate before its intended or proper end or its full extent
    “Personal freedom is curtailed in many countries”
    synonyms: clip, cut short
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    type of:
    shorten
    make shorter than originally intended; reduce or retrench in length or duration
  2. verb
    place restrictions on
    synonyms: curb, cut back, restrict
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    types:
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    abridge
    lessen, diminish, or curtail
    immobilise, immobilize
    cause to be unable to move
    paralyse, paralyze
    cause to be paralyzed and immobile
    stun, stupefy
    make senseless or dizzy by or as if by a blow
    type of:
    circumscribe, confine, limit
    restrict or confine
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