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[krak-doun] /ˈkrækˌdaʊn/
the severe or stern enforcement of regulations, laws, etc., as to root out abuses or correct a problem.
Origin of crackdown
1930-35, Americanism; noun use of verb phrase crack down Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Historical Examples
  • Then there was a crackdown on Catholics, with houses being searched for hiding places for priests.

Word Origin and History for crackdown

also crack down; 1935 (n.), 1940 (v.), from verbal phrase, from crack (v.) + down (adv.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Slang definitions & phrases for crackdown



A particular instance or severity of punishment, law enforcement, etc: The Mayor again vowed a crackdown on the porn shops (1930s+)

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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