Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Training expected to produce a specific character or pattern of behavior, especially training that produces moral or mental improvement.
  • n. Controlled behavior resulting from disciplinary training; self-control.
  • n. Control obtained by enforcing compliance or order.
  • n. A systematic method to obtain obedience: a military discipline.
  • n. A state of order based on submission to rules and authority: a teacher who demanded discipline in the classroom.
  • n. Punishment intended to correct or train.
  • n. A set of rules or methods, as those regulating the practice of a church or monastic order.
  • n. A branch of knowledge or teaching.
  • transitive v. To train by instruction and practice, especially to teach self-control to.
  • transitive v. To teach to obey rules or accept authority. See Synonyms at teach.
  • transitive v. To punish in order to gain control or enforce obedience. See Synonyms at punish.
  • transitive v. To impose order on: needed to discipline their study habits.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A controlled behaviour; self-control
  • n. An enforced compliance or control
  • n. A systematic method of obtaining obedience
  • n. A state of order based on submission to authority
  • n. A punishment to train or maintain control
  • n. A set of rules regulating behaviour
  • n. A flagellation as a means of obtaining sexual gratification
  • n. A specific branch of knowledge or learning
  • n. A category in which a certain art, sport or other activity belongs, or a sub-category of said activity.
  • v. To train someone by instruction and practice.
  • v. To teach someone to obey authority.
  • v. To punish someone in order to (re)gain control.
  • v. To impose order on someone.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The treatment suited to a disciple or learner; education; development of the faculties by instruction and exercise; training, whether physical, mental, or moral.
  • n. Training to act in accordance with established rules; accustoming to systematic and regular action; drill.
  • n. Subjection to rule; submissiveness to order and control; habit of obedience.
  • n. Severe training, corrective of faults; instruction by means of misfortune, suffering, punishment, etc.
  • n. Correction; chastisement; punishment inflicted by way of correction and training.
  • n. The subject matter of instruction; a branch of knowledge.
  • n. The enforcement of methods of correction against one guilty of ecclesiastical offenses; reformatory or penal action toward a church member.
  • n. Self-inflicted and voluntary corporal punishment, as penance, or otherwise; specifically, a penitential scourge.
  • n. A system of essential rules and duties.
  • transitive v. To educate; to develop by instruction and exercise; to train.
  • transitive v. To accustom to regular and systematic action; to bring under control so as to act systematically; to train to act together under orders; to teach subordination to; to form a habit of obedience in; to drill.
  • transitive v. To improve by corrective and penal methods; to chastise; to correct.
  • transitive v. To inflict ecclesiastical censures and penalties upon.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To train or educate; prepare by instruction; specifically, to teach rules and practice, and accustom to order and subordination; drill: as, to discipline troops.
  • To correct; chastise; punish.
  • Specifically To execute the laws of a church upon (an offender).
  • To keep in subjection; regulate; govern.
  • Synonyms To train, form, educate, instruct, drill, regulate.
  • n. Mental and moral training, either under one's own guidance or under that of another; the cultivation of the mind and formation of the manners; instruction and government, comprehending the communication of knowledge and the regulation of practice; specifically, training to act in accordance with rules; drill: as, military discipline; monastic discipline.
  • n. A set or system of rules and regulations; a method of regulating practice: as, the discipline prescribed for the church.
  • n. Specifically, ecclesiastical: The laws which bind the subjects of a church in their conduct, as distinguished from the dogmas or articles of faith which affect their belief.
  • n. The methods employed by a church for enforcing its laws, and so preserving its purity or its authority by penal measures against offenders. Three kinds of discipline were known to the ancient synagogue, all of which are entitled excommunication. In most modern Protestant churches discipline consists of three penalties: public censure, suspension, and excommunication.
  • n. Subjection to rule; submissiveness to control; obedience to rules and commands: as, the school was under good discipline.
  • n. Correction; chastisement; punishment inflicted by way of correction and training; hence, edification or correction by means of misfortune or suffering.
  • n. That which serves to instruct or train; specifically, a course of study; a science or an art.
  • n. An instrument of punishment; a scourge, or the like, used for religious penance. See disciplinarium.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a branch of knowledge
  • v. punish in order to gain control or enforce obedience
  • n. the act of punishing
  • n. training to improve strength or self-control
  • v. develop (children's) behavior by instruction and practice; especially to teach self-control
  • n. the trait of being well behaved
  • n. a system of rules of conduct or method of practice

Etymologies

Middle English, from Old French descepline, from Latin disciplīna, from discipulus, pupil; see disciple.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Middle English, from Old English, from Old French descipline, from Latin disciplina ("instruction") and discipulus ("pupil"), from discere ("to learn"), from Proto-Indo-European *dek- (“(cause to) accept”). (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • The Depression and World War II delayed the mechanization of the farms here, and one of the first disciplines imposed on me was that of a teamster. Wendell Berry "A Native Hill"

    July 19, 2008