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[gahyd-lahyn] /ˈgaɪdˌlaɪn/
any guide or indication of a future course of action:
guidelines on the government's future policy.
a lightly marked line used as a guide, as in composing a drawing, a typed page, or a line of lettering.
a rope or cord that serves to guide one's steps, especially over rocky terrain, through underground passages, etc.
a rope or wire used in guiding the movement of stage scenery or curtains being raised or lowered.
1775-85, Americanism; guide + line1 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for guidelines
  • Follow these guidelines to grow happy, healthy shrubs.
  • Follow these guidelines to construct a hanging basket.
  • Follow their guidelines in your own garden and you can't go wrong.
  • Make use of your water department's local lawn-watering guidelines.
  • In addition to fish, they provide guidelines for choosing produce and meat.
  • Tuck these guidelines away and experiment without fear.
  • He pioneered in its sanitary handling by enforcing strict health guidelines on farmers.
  • By following these guidelines it becomes easier to determine whether or not you have really found a fossil bone.
  • Each preserve is marked by yellow buoys with guidelines providing safe and easy access to the wrecks.
  • Explore the nutritional guidelines for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
British Dictionary definitions for guidelines


a principle put forward to set standards or determine a course of action
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for guidelines



1785, "line marked on a surface before cutting," from guide + line (n.). Meaning "rope for steering a hot-air balloon" is from 1846. In figurative use by 1948. Related: Guidelines.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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