Definition of interdict in English:



Pronunciation /ˈɪntədɪkt/
  • 1An authoritative prohibition.

    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The court says it extended the interdict to give the applicant a chance to file a replying affidavit.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘He said he had sought legal advice and decided not to oppose the interdict and to pay the centre's legal costs.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The authority later had to reverse the decision after one mother sought an interim interdict against the ruling.’
    • ‘For the past half-century, his St. John's squads have been guided by an odd set of interdicts.’
    • ‘The company responded by getting a court interdict prohibiting any strikes related to the suspension of the shop stewards by the union.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘The interdict meant if either of the two intimidated Souter, or incited anyone else to bully her, they would be arrested.’
    • ‘Collins responded by gaining an interim interdict against the committee.’
    • ‘Macdonald has tried, unsuccessfully, in the recent past to win interdicts to prove its case.’
    • ‘Firearm owners will seek a court interdict on Wednesday to stop the government from enacting legislation to control the ownership of guns.’
    • ‘During that hearing, Dawson upheld an interdict sought by James challenging the right for the children's hearing to go ahead.’
    • ‘The university on Friday obtained an interim interdict prohibiting students from damaging property and harassing other students or staff members.’
    • ‘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.’
    prohibition, ban, bar, veto, proscription, interdiction, embargo, moratorium, injunction, restraining order
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    1. 1.1Scottish Law A court order forbidding an act; a negative injunction.
      • ‘She said her daughter, who had been severely beaten by Sampson, had sought at least four interdicts or restraining orders to prevent him from injuring her or approaching her or her mother's home.’
      • ‘Last week Midlothian council said its solicitors would seek a judicial review and an interdict to block the referendum.’
      • ‘I had an interdict - like an English injunction - ordering me not to be within 100 yards, but I ripped it up publicly.’
      • ‘When the paper refused, the Lord Advocate sought an interdict against the Scotsman itself.’
      • ‘At Inverness Sheriff Court, Gloag was granted an interim interdict against the tenants, preventing them using the narrow strip and a nearby carport.’
    2. 1.2 (in the Roman Catholic Church) a sentence debarring a person or place from ecclesiastical functions and privileges.
      ‘a papal interdict’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Since John's response to the interdict was to confiscate the estates of the Church it even helped to ease his financial problem.’
      • ‘The church reacted to them ‘with interdict, excommunication, and anathema.’’
      • ‘In 1148 he incurred Stephen's wrath by attending a papal council at Rheims and retorted with an interdict which was little regarded.’
      • ‘While city officials prosecuted those who had been arrested, Fenwick placed the church under interdict, effectively closing it for two weeks.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Uncoupled from Christian myth or meaning matrix, the interdict imposed on the murderer is one of primitive annulment.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘The threat that had made Henry compromise - an interdict over England and his continental lands together with a personal excommunication - was a blunt weapon.’


[with object]
Pronunciation /ˌɪntəˈdɪkt/
North American
  • 1Prohibit or forbid (something)

    ‘society will never interdict sex’
    • ‘These steps range from 24-hour broadcasts of Radio Free Asia to interdicting weapons shipment.’
    • ‘Bulgaria also interdicts enormous amounts of narcotics and counterfeit currency but, strangely, there are no successful prosecutions of major drug bosses or counterfeiters.’
    • ‘He is under pressure to eradicate the crop, not interdict the trade.’
    • ‘The day before yesterday, the US partially closed the border with Jordan, interdicting the entry of men between the ages of 20 and 45.’
    • ‘Because the government was only about to sign a declaration of intent, a bid to interdict the signing of ‘supply contracts’ was premature.’
    • ‘Resolution 1373 required nations to interdict arms flows and financial transfers to suspected terrorist groups, report on terrorists' movements, and update national legislation to fight them.’
    • ‘The failure to interdict northern trespassers is particularly worrisome, since Canada is a proven springboard for terrorists.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘It has set up a multilateral Proliferation Security Initiative to interdict weapons, with France and Germany among the eight European participants.’
    • ‘That has meant that our ability to be proactive, to try to interdict terrorist activities before they struck has been limited.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Islâm has interdicted this form of investment.’
    • ‘The Japanese naval ships, or battleships or whatever, cannot interdict ships of other countries on the high sea.’
    • ‘In praising China's cooperation on terrorism, Bush noted that China has shared intelligence with the US and interdicted financing of terrorist organizations.’
    • ‘Proposed measures include interdicting shipments of such weapons on the high seas.’
    • ‘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.’
    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 from Prohibit someone from (doing something)
      ‘I have not been interdicted from consuming alcoholic beverages’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘It also asked the court to interdict them from telling suppliers that they are in financial difficulties.’
  • 2Intercept and prevent the movement of (a prohibited commodity or person)

    ‘army efforts to interdict enemy supply shipments’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Similarly, the Proliferation Security Initiative of the United States seeks to interdict on the high seas the transfer of sensitive nuclear materials.’
    • ‘We've interdicted, and our allies have helped us arrest people.’
    • ‘We hope that we have improved capacity to interdict, to make difficult, to disrupt and prevent terrorism.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘‘Word is,’ he says in a mild Texas accent, ‘we might go to the Iranian border to interdict smugglers.’’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘On the operational level, Bulgaria has made great strides in interdicting drugs and dismantling counterfeit currency operations.’
    • ‘And our job is to anticipate them, discover them, interdict them, and stop them.’
    • ‘We have organized a proliferation security initiative, to interdict lethal materials and technologies in transit.’
    • ‘In the future, stopping wmd proliferation will require the United States to consider interdicting supplies on the high seas or possibly attacking nuclear facilities.’
    • ‘The A109s’ role is to interdict high-speed smuggling vessels and they are armed with machine guns.’
    • ‘How did you interdict rebel supply lines/lines of communication?’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘Indian artillery barrages that year interdicted Pakistani troop movements and thwarted the original invasion plans.’
    • ‘We have to be alert and aware and be as well-prepared to interdict and prevent all of those potential forms of attack.’
    • ‘Even tighter restrictions were imposed on Operation Relex, which interdicted people-smuggling operations on Australia's northern borders.’
    • ‘The police have a success rate in interdicting the flow of arms that is even more dismal than the recent record of the West Indies cricket team.’
    intercept, stop, head off, cut off
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    1. 2.1Military Impede (an enemy force), especially by bombing lines of communication or supply.
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Military history is rich with scenarios in which ground convoy routes have been interdicted by enemy activity and closed until the threat was cleared.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘For example, a friendly higher echelon may have interdicted the enemy formation we expected to see.’
      • ‘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.’


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.