Definition of prohibition in English:


Syllabification: pro·hi·bi·tion
Pronunciation: /ˌprō(h)əˈbiSHən


  • 1The action of forbidding something, especially by law: they argue that prohibition of drugs will always fail
    More example sentences
    • Turvey has long argued against drug prohibition, yet he increasingly applauds and encourages enforcement measures.
    • I'd like to promote elimination of drug prohibition.
    • The one on drug prohibition was also very important to me.
    banning, forbidding, prohibiting, barring, debarment, vetoing, proscription, interdiction, outlawingban, bar, interdict, veto, embargo, injunction, moratorium
  • 1.1A law or regulation forbidding something: those who favor prohibitions on insider trading
    More example sentences
    • The prohibition on retroactive penal legislation is linked to the right to a fair trial, as it is irrevocably an example of an unfair trial.
    • The prohibition on ‘common law’ crimes is a good thing even though injustice can result.
    • Similarly, many prohibitions of the criminal law are morally neutral.
  • 2 (Prohibition) The prevention by law of the manufacture and sale of alcohol, especially in the US between 1920 and 1933.
    More example sentences
    • Later, the islands were used as a smuggling stopover for arms in the civil war and for bootleg alcohol during Prohibition.
    • The cases date back to the 1920s, when Prohibition created an illicit trade in alcohol.
    • Made up largely of family-owned vineyards at the onset of Prohibition, the industry got clobbered by the new legislation.



Pronunciation: /-ˌnerē/
More example sentences
  • As the moral panic unfolds, more and more cultural forms transgress or come up against the symbolic boundary that such prohibitionary legislation seeks to impose.
  • Throughout the province there was a real threat that the federal government would pass a prohibitionary law.


More example sentences
  • ‘Mother’ was an unyielding moralist, a militant Prohibitionist, a staunch defender of the Sunday blue laws, and a devoted churchgoer opposed to the theory of evolution, to Italian opera, and to nude statues.
  • Five years of Prohibition have had, at least, this one benign effect: they have completely disposed of all the favorite arguments of the Prohibitionists.
  • These laws were justified by an unholy alliance of liquor wholesalers, bricks-and-mortar retailers, and Prohibitionists as being necessary to keep booze out of the hands of minors.


late Middle English: from Old French, from Latin prohibitio(n-), from prohibere 'keep in check' (see prohibit).

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