Definition of interdict in English:


See synonyms for interdict

Translate interdict into Spanish


  • 1An authoritative prohibition.

    ‘an interdict against marriage of those of close kin’
    • ‘The university on Friday obtained an interim interdict prohibiting students from damaging property and harassing other students or staff members.’
    • ‘The company responded by getting a court interdict prohibiting any strikes related to the suspension of the shop stewards by the union.’
    • ‘The standard interdict handed out to abusers is hard to enforce, especially where partners have never married or where a relationship has ended in divorce.’
    • ‘The importance of football as a moral educator is that it touches the repressed sources of violence, arouses them, and then counters them with civilised interdicts.’
    • ‘For the past half-century, his St. John's squads have been guided by an odd set of interdicts.’
    • ‘Macdonald has tried, unsuccessfully, in the recent past to win interdicts to prove its case.’
    • ‘It is understood that he considered an interim interdict against the party, which would have put the ballot on hold until each candidate had received a ‘fair’ opportunity to get their message to party members.’
    • ‘Meanwhile, on June 13, a five-judge panel of the SAC issued an interdict against the preliminary implementation of the contract pending a court decision.’
    • ‘But the interdict sparked fury among patriotic Scottish students, and the university has been inundated with e-mails from angry alumni demanding that the dress law be removed.’
    • ‘Or perhaps we don't really appreciate what went on behind the scenes - perhaps the deputy minister had to bring an urgent interdict to find out what was going on in Pakistan.’
    • ‘When, as in the present case, the allegations are being freely aired on foreign web-sites, accessible at the click of a mouse button, then the interdict is simply by-passed.’
    • ‘A mother could, however, take out an interdict to stop the test by arguing it was not in the child's interests - and this is where a major ethical minefield opens up.’
    • ‘Firearm owners will seek a court interdict on Wednesday to stop the government from enacting legislation to control the ownership of guns.’
    • ‘An interim interdict banning the newspaper from describing the behaviour of the prince and other royals was awarded at the Court of Session in Edinburgh.’
    • ‘During that hearing, Dawson upheld an interdict sought by James challenging the right for the children's hearing to go ahead.’
    • ‘The interdict meant if either of the two intimidated Souter, or incited anyone else to bully her, they would be arrested.’
    • ‘He said he had sought legal advice and decided not to oppose the interdict and to pay the centre's legal costs.’
    • ‘The authority later had to reverse the decision after one mother sought an interim interdict against the ruling.’
    • ‘Collins responded by gaining an interim interdict against the committee.’
    • ‘The court says it extended the interdict to give the applicant a chance to file a replying affidavit.’
    prohibition, ban, bar, veto, proscription, interdiction, embargo, moratorium, injunction, restraining order
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    1. 1.1(in the Roman Catholic Church) a sentence barring a person, or especially a place, from ecclesiastical functions and privileges.
      ‘a papal interdict’
      • ‘Uncoupled from Christian myth or meaning matrix, the interdict imposed on the murderer is one of primitive annulment.’
      • ‘The church reacted to them ‘with interdict, excommunication, and anathema.’’
      • ‘While city officials prosecuted those who had been arrested, Fenwick placed the church under interdict, effectively closing it for two weeks.’
      • ‘In 1148 he incurred Stephen's wrath by attending a papal council at Rheims and retorted with an interdict which was little regarded.’
      • ‘Since John's response to the interdict was to confiscate the estates of the Church it even helped to ease his financial problem.’
      • ‘The issue was resolved only in 1188, and in the intervening decade William was excommunicated and his kingdom placed under an interdict, while numerous appeals were made to Rome.’
      • ‘He interpreted the antislavery actions of the Baptist mission societies as laying ‘a kind of Romish interdict upon us in the discharge of an imperative duty.’’
      • ‘In that year, after long friction between Rome and Venice over matters of papal power in secular affairs, Paul V placed Venice under the interdict on the advice of Bellarmine as his personal theological consultant.’
      • ‘Innocent's interdict forbade all ceremonies save baptism of infants and confessions for the dying: it operated from 1208 and John was excommunicated in 1209.’
      • ‘The threat that had made Henry compromise - an interdict over England and his continental lands together with a personal excommunication - was a blunt weapon.’
      • ‘In 1208, the year the pope launched a brutal crusade upon the heretics of Albi in the south of France, he placed King John under interdict, and in the following year excommunicated him and his kingdom.’



/ˈin(t)ərˌdik(t)/ /ˈɪn(t)ərˌdɪk(t)/

transitive verb

[with object]
  • 1mainly North American Prohibit or forbid (something)

    ‘society will never interdict sex’
    • ‘Bulgaria also interdicts enormous amounts of narcotics and counterfeit currency but, strangely, there are no successful prosecutions of major drug bosses or counterfeiters.’
    • ‘Now this Bill explicitly interdicts the incitement of religious hatred, where that means hatred of a group of persons defined by reference to religious belief or lack of religious belief.’
    • ‘The day before yesterday, the US partially closed the border with Jordan, interdicting the entry of men between the ages of 20 and 45.’
    • ‘It has set up a multilateral Proliferation Security Initiative to interdict weapons, with France and Germany among the eight European participants.’
    • ‘The Japanese naval ships, or battleships or whatever, cannot interdict ships of other countries on the high sea.’
    • ‘And so we need to be on a very aggressive level to root out all the information that we can about that and try to interdict any future acts of terrorism.’
    • ‘That has meant that our ability to be proactive, to try to interdict terrorist activities before they struck has been limited.’
    • ‘He is under pressure to eradicate the crop, not interdict the trade.’
    • ‘These hostile pictures of psychiatry and especially of shock therapy led to the legislation that interdicted ECT in California in 1973 and Texas in 1993, and regulated its use in other states.’
    • ‘In regard to reproductive cloning, Guenin maintains that because the FDA has effectively interdicted the practice, the likely incidence in the U.S. is nil.’
    • ‘The new law could also be used to interdict professional work if the offense was linked to it, for example, in cases of medical doctors abusing or unjustifiably prescribing narcotics.’
    • ‘Another area for future development in the care of patients with AAT deficiency is early detection of the disease to interdict smoking or exposure to toxic atmospheres.’
    • ‘Proposed measures include interdicting shipments of such weapons on the high seas.’
    • ‘Because the government was only about to sign a declaration of intent, a bid to interdict the signing of ‘supply contracts’ was premature.’
    • ‘These steps range from 24-hour broadcasts of Radio Free Asia to interdicting weapons shipment.’
    • ‘Every nail thus produced was an infringement of the Pursuer's patents, the sale of which could have been interdicted, and would give a right of action against all concerned in its production and sale.’
    prohibit, forbid, ban, bar, veto, proscribe, make illegal, place an embargo on, embargo, disallow, debar, outlaw, stop, put a stop to, put an end to, block, suppress
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    1. 1.1interdict someone fromProhibit someone from (doing something)
      ‘I have not been interdicted from consuming or holding alcoholic beverages’
      • ‘It also asked the court to interdict them from telling suppliers that they are in financial difficulties.’
      • ‘Judge Sandi said no prejudice would be caused to him by the order interdicting him from practising as he could not in any event do so without a legitimate fidelity fund certificate.’
      • ‘He has asked the court to interdict the other parties from interfering with his work and that of other office-bearers.’
      • ‘Police on Monday used stun grenades to disperse students who blocked the main Alice road outside the campus after the university obtained a court order interdicting unregistered students from coming onto the campus.’
  • 2mainly North American Intercept and prevent the movement of (a prohibited commodity or person)

    ‘the police established roadblocks throughout the country for interdicting drugs’
    • ‘This is the most critical work of counter-terrorism: gathering intelligence about the enemy that enables you to detect and interdict him before he can put his plan into action.’
    • ‘Instead I suggest interdicting one of the cattle shipments and replacing all of the cows in the shipment with some sort of robotic cow or perhaps ninjas in cow suits.’
    • ‘We have to be alert and aware and be as well-prepared to interdict and prevent all of those potential forms of attack.’
    • ‘We hope that we have improved capacity to interdict, to make difficult, to disrupt and prevent terrorism.’
    • ‘We've interdicted, and our allies have helped us arrest people.’
    • ‘As commander in chief, the president (working through the secretary of defense and others) must wield his executive power to hunt down, interdict, arrest, or kill the nation's enemies.’
    • ‘The Germans must move to Sweden to block any Russian move there while the army can be used in any fashion to interdict or disrupt Russian operations.’
    • ‘On the operational level, Bulgaria has made great strides in interdicting drugs and dismantling counterfeit currency operations.’
    • ‘Indian artillery barrages that year interdicted Pakistani troop movements and thwarted the original invasion plans.’
    • ‘How do we interdict energy supply lines when the main fuel is not petroleum-based but gaseous, producible in the field, and not under the control of relatively few governments?’
    • ‘For instance, influencing or interdicting one key player could disrupt an adversary's decision-making capability.’
    • ‘The A109s’ role is to interdict high-speed smuggling vessels and they are armed with machine guns.’
    • ‘Similarly, the Proliferation Security Initiative of the United States seeks to interdict on the high seas the transfer of sensitive nuclear materials.’
    • ‘In the future, stopping wmd proliferation will require the United States to consider interdicting supplies on the high seas or possibly attacking nuclear facilities.’
    • ‘And our job is to anticipate them, discover them, interdict them, and stop them.’
    • ‘Even tighter restrictions were imposed on Operation Relex, which interdicted people-smuggling operations on Australia's northern borders.’
    • ‘‘Word is,’ he says in a mild Texas accent, ‘we might go to the Iranian border to interdict smugglers.’’
    • ‘We have organized a proliferation security initiative, to interdict lethal materials and technologies in transit.’
    • ‘How did you interdict rebel supply lines/lines of communication?’
    intercept, stop, head off, cut off
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    1. 2.1Military Impede (an enemy force), especially by aerial bombing of lines of communication or supply.
      ‘A classic example of the limited nature of the Korean War was the prohibition against crossing the Yalu River to engage enemy forces or interdict lines of communication.’
      • ‘Major enemy forces could be reliably blocked and destroyed mostly by artillery fire and air strikes; redeployment by sea could be interdicted by massed Air Force and Navy attacks.’
      • ‘Thereafter final Allied victory was only a matter of time, as sea and air forces interdicted German supply lines and Allied materiel poured in at astonishing rates.’
      • ‘For example, a friendly higher echelon may have interdicted the enemy formation we expected to see.’
      • ‘Military history is rich with scenarios in which ground convoy routes have been interdicted by enemy activity and closed until the threat was cleared.’



/ˌin(t)ərˈdikt/ /ˌɪn(t)ərˈdɪkt/


Middle English entredite (in the ecclesiastical sense), from Old French entredit, from Latin interdictum, past participle of interdicere ‘interpose, forbid by decree’, from inter- ‘between’ + dicere ‘say’. The spelling change in the 16th century was due to association with the Latin form.