1960–65; inhibit + ed2

overinhibited, adjective
semi-inhibited, adjective Unabridged


verb (used with object)
to restrain, hinder, arrest, or check (an action, impulse, etc.).
to prohibit; forbid.
Psychology. to consciously or unconsciously suppress or restrain (psychologically or sociologically unacceptable behavior).
Chemistry. to decrease the rate of action of or stop (a chemical reaction).

1425–75; late Middle English inhibiten < Latin inhibitus, past participle of inhibēre to restrain, equivalent to in- in-2 + -hibēre, combining form of habēre to have, hold

inhibitable, adjective
inhibitory [in-hib-i-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee] , inhibitive, adjective
interinhibitive, adjective
noninhibitive, adjective
noninhibitory, adjective
overinhibit, verb (used with object)
subinhibitory, adjective
uninhibiting, adjective

1. repress, discourage, obstruct. 2. interdict. See forbid. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
inhibit (ɪnˈhɪbɪt)
vb , -its, -iting, -ited
1.  to restrain or hinder (an impulse, a desire, etc)
2.  to prohibit; forbid
3.  to stop, prevent, or decrease the rate of (a chemical reaction)
4.  electronics
 a.  to prevent the occurrence of (a particular signal) in a circuit
 b.  to prevent the performance of (a particular operation)
[C15: from Latin inhibēre to restrain, from in-² + habēre to have]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

mid-15c., "to forbid, prohibit," from L. inhibit-, pp. stem of inhibere (see inhibition). Psychological sense (1876) is from earlier, softened meaning of "restrain, check, hinder" (1530s).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

inhibit in·hib·it (ĭn-hĭb'ĭt)
v. in·hib·it·ed, in·hib·it·ing, in·hib·its

  1. To hold back; restrain.

  2. To suppress or restrain a behavioral process, an impulse, or a desire consciously or unconsciously.

  3. To prevent or decrease the rate of a chemical reaction.

  4. To decrease, limit, or block the action or function of something in the body, as an enzyme or organ.

in·hib'i·to'ry (-tôr'ē) adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
Dramatists seem to have been inhibited by the subject's technical density.
In the study, the scientists used a drug that inhibited the gene in axolotls.
The divisions then become more defined, and communication becomes severely
Animal populations are inhibited by toxic substances, vehicles, and the loss of
  habitat and food sources.
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