Definition of bridle in English:

bridle

Line breaks: bridle
Pronunciation: /ˈbrʌɪd(ə)l
 
/

noun

  • 1The headgear used to control a horse, consisting of buckled straps to which a bit and reins are attached: grooms came at once to take the bridles
    More example sentences
    • The king ordered eight horses with gold-plaited bridles led into the hall.
    • The man reaching for the bridle saw Kemp and dropped the bridle of his horse like it was a hot poker.
    • Lila nodded and offered them two horses' bridles.
  • 1.1A line, rope, or device that is used to restrain or control the action or movement of something.
    More example sentences
    • Also shown was a variant in which the brass fence guides were replaced by wooden arms secured by a bridle.
    • The dream of every cattle farmer in Namibia: to get that coloured rosette on the bull's bridle.
  • 1.2 Nautical A mooring cable.
    More example sentences
    • My first mate retrieved our towing bridle from a locker while Jeff flaked out our anchor line.
    • A deck hand was killed when a tow bridle unexpectedly became taut and pinned her against a tugboat railing.
    • They rigged a towing bridle and re-established the tow with the tug.

verb

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  • 1 [with object] Put a bridle on (a horse): (as adjective bridled) five horses, saddled and bridled, were tied by the reins to branches of trees
    More example sentences
    • Saddling and bridling a horse would be a subject of its own and I will certainly follow up.
    • Maxim had already saddled and bridled both their horses and was waiting patiently.
    • They learn to saddle and bridle the horse, to brush and feed them, and to clean the stall.
  • 1.1Bring (something) under control; curb: the fact that he was their servant bridled his tongue
    More example sentences
    • Some-one please bridle this infamous brute, before it is too late!
    • These symbols of solidarity circumscribe the Amish world and bridle the forces of assimilation.
    • But he hoped that they would be bridled: ‘We can control them,’ he said.
    Synonyms
    curb, restrain, hold back, bite back, control, keep control of, keep in check, check, keep a tight rein on, rein in/back; govern, master, repress, suppress, subdue, stifle
    informal keep a/the lid on
  • 2 [no object] Show one’s resentment or anger, especially by throwing up one’s head and drawing in one’s chin: she bridled at his tone
    More example sentences
    • Anna bridled at the implication that she couldn't look after herself.
    • How she had bridled at his unsavory opinion of her.
    • Almost alone among them, Morrissey bridled at the credit he got.
    Synonyms
    bristle, be/become indignant, take offence, take umbrage, be affronted, be offended, get angry, draw oneself up, feel one's hackles rise

Phrases

off (or on) the bridle

see bit3.

Origin

Old English brīdel (noun), brīdlian (verb), of Germanic origin; related to Dutch breidel (noun). sense 2 of the verb use is from the action of a horse when reined in.

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