There are 2 definitions of stifle in English:

stifle1

Line breaks: stifle
Pronunciation: /ˈstʌɪf(ə)l
 
/

verb

[with object]
1Make (someone) unable to breathe properly; suffocate: those in the streets were stifled by the fumes
More example sentences
  • The ground gave way as the plants pulled him down, knocking the wind out of his chest, and stealing the air he could have breathed by stifling him with their multitude.
  • When the Indians set fire to the main building as well as the sheds, the flames fanned into a sunburst, and their smoke stifled the people of Fort Mims.
  • Last night I went out and two ladies who were sitting at my table were stifling me with their perfume.
Synonyms
2Restrain (a reaction) or stop oneself acting on (an emotion): she stifled a giggle
More example sentences
  • He stifled his immediate reaction, although he couldn't keep from tightening his jaw.
  • He almost choked on his meat but managed to stifle his sudden reaction to her statement with a hastily gulp of water.
  • He began to speak, but had to stop again to stifle a giggle.
Synonyms
suppress, smother, restrain, keep back, hold back, hold in, fight back, choke back, gulp back, withhold, check, keep in check, swallow, muffle, quench, curb, silence, contain, bottle up; bite one's lip, cork up
2.1Prevent or constrain (an activity or idea): high taxes were stifling private enterprise
More example sentences
  • A county judge dismissed that case last April under a California law aimed at discouraging lawsuits that stifle constitutionally-protected activities.
  • Taxes stifle enterprise only if they increase with enterprise.
  • The malfunction of enterprises stifled the growth of innovative designers.
Synonyms
constrain, hinder, hamper, impede, hold back, curb, check, restrain, prevent, inhibit; put an end/stop to, stop, quash, squash, stamp out, destroy, crush, extinguish, deaden, damp down, subdue, suppress, repress; silence, muffle, mute, gag

Origin

late Middle English: perhaps from a frequentative of Old French estouffer 'smother, stifle'.

Derivatives

stifler

noun
More example sentences
  • These stiflers of academic success stem from personal experiences related to learning tasks.
  • Perhaps these stiflers of free press have had some profound conversion or just found it expedient for purposes of re-election.

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Word of the day conspicuous
Pronunciation: kənˈspikyo͞oəs
adjective
standing out so as to be clearly visible

There are 2 definitions of stifle in English:

stifle2

Line breaks: stifle
Pronunciation: /ˈstʌɪf(ə)l
 
/
(also stifle joint)

noun

A joint in the legs of horses, dogs, and other animals, equivalent to the knee in humans.
More example sentences
  • At necropsy all stifle joints were stable to an anterior drawer force with no significant limitations in passive range of motion.
  • Alas, Tamarillo went down late last night with a knock to the stifle joint incurred over the cross-county and was withdrawn.
  • It primarily occurs in the shoulder or elbow joints, but it can affect the hocks or stifles, too.

Origin

Middle English: of unknown origin.

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