circumscribe

circumscribe

[sur-kuhm-skrahyb, sur-kuhm-skrahyb]
verb (used with object), circumscribed, circumscribing.
1.
to draw a line around; encircle: to circumscribe a city on a map.
2.
to enclose within bounds; limit or confine, especially narrowly: Her social activities are circumscribed by school regulations.
3.
to mark off; define; delimit: to circumscribe the area of a science.
4.
Geometry.
a.
to draw (a figure) around another figure so as to touch as many points as possible.
b.
(of a figure) to enclose (another figure) in this manner.

Origin:
1350–1400; Middle English < Latin circumscrībere, equivalent to circum- circum- + scrībere to write

circumscribable, adjective
circumscriber, noun
noncircumscribed, adjective
uncircumscribable, adjective
uncircumscribed, adjective


2. restrict, restrain, check, hamper, hinder.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
circumscribe (ˌsɜːkəmˈskraɪb, ˈsɜːkəmˌskraɪb)
 
vb
1.  to restrict within limits
2.  to mark or set the bounds of
3.  Compare inscribe to draw a geometric construction around (another construction) so that the two are in contact but do not intersect
4.  to draw a line round
 
[C15: from Latin circumscrībere, from circum- + scrībere to write]
 
circum'scribable
 
adj
 
circum'scriber
 
n

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

circumscribe
c.1385, from L. circumscribere "to draw a line around, limit, confine," from circum- "around" + scribere "write" (see script).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
circumscribe   (sûr'kəm-skrīb')  Pronunciation Key 
To draw a figure around another figure so as to touch as many points as possible. A circle that is circumscribed around a triangle touches it at each of the triangle's three vertices.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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