from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A harness, consisting of a headstall, bit, and reins, fitted about a horse's head and used to restrain or guide the animal.
- n. A curb or check: put a bridle on spending.
- n. Nautical A span of chain, wire, or rope that can be secured at both ends to an object and slung from its center point.
- transitive v. To put a bridle on.
- transitive v. To control or restrain with or as if with a bridle. See Synonyms at restrain.
- intransitive v. To lift the head and draw in the chin as an expression of scorn or resentment.
- intransitive v. To show anger or resentment; take offense: bridling at the criticism.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. The headgear with which a horse is directed and which carries a bit and reins.
- n. A length of line or cable attached to two parts of something to spread the force of a pull, as the rigging on a kite for attaching line.
- v. To put a bridle on.
- v. To check, restrain, or control with, or as if with, a bridle; as in bridle your tongue.
- v. To show hostility or resentment.
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The head gear with which a horse is governed and restrained, consisting of a headstall, a bit, and reins, with other appendages.
- n. A restraint; a curb; a check.
- n. The piece in the interior of a gun lock, which holds in place the tumbler, sear, etc.
- n. A span of rope, line, or chain made fast as both ends, so that another rope, line, or chain may be attached to its middle.
- n. A mooring hawser.
- transitive v. To put a bridle upon; to equip with a bridle.
- transitive v. To restrain, guide, or govern, with, or as with, a bridle; to check, curb, or control.
- intransitive v. To hold up the head, and draw in the chin, as an expression of pride, scorn, or resentment; to assume a lofty manner; -- usually with up.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. That portion of the gear or harness of a horse (or other animal similarly used) which is fitted to its head, and by which it is governed and restrained, consisting usually of a head-stall, a bit, and reins, with other appendages, according to its particular form and uses. See cut under harness.
- n. An old instrument of punishment and restraint for scolds: a simpler form of the branks.
- n. Figuratively, a restraint; a curb; a check.
- n. The piece in the interior of a gun-lock which covers and holds in place the tumbler and sear, being itself held by the screws on which they turn. See cut under gun-lock.
- n. The piece on the end of a plow-beam to which the draftshackle is attached; the clevis. Also called muzzle or plow-head.
- n. In machinery, a link, flange, or other attachment for limiting the movement of any part of a machine.
- n. Nautical, a chain or rope span both ends of which are made fast, the strain or power being applied to the bight.
- n. In pathology, a small band attaching two parts to each other, as two serous surfaces after inflammation, or the sides of the urethra after urethritis, or stretched across a pustule or vesicle, modifying its shape.
- n. In anatomy, a frenum (which see).
- To put a bridle on: as, to brīdle a horse.
- To restrain, guide, or govern; check, curb, or control: as, to bridle the passions.
- Synonyms To repress, master, subdue.
- To hold the head up, in the manner of a spirited horse under a strong rein, especially as an expression of pride, scorn, or resentment; assume a lofty manner so as to assert one's dignity or express indignation; toss the head; strut: generally with up.
- n. An arrangement by which a large kite, used in aërial observations, is attached to the steel wire by which it is held.
- n. A device for controlling the speed of logs on a skid-road.
- n. In certain cephalopods, one of the bands which attach the funnel to the head.
- n. In pianoforte-making. Same as bridle-tape.
- To connect; join as by a bridle: as draft-rollers (in cotton-manufacturing) that are yoked together.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- v. put a bridle on
- n. the act of restraining power or action or limiting excess
- n. headgear for a horse; includes a headstall and bit and reins to give the rider or driver control
- v. anger or take offense
- v. respond to the reins, as of horses
Middle English bridel, from Old English brīdel.(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Old English brīdel, from Proto-Germanic *brigdilaz (Wiktionary)