box in


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box someone in

Fig. to put someone into a bind; to reduce the number of someone's alternatives. I don't want to box you in, but you are running out of options. I want to box in the whole staff, so they'll have to do it my way.
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box someone or something in

to trap or confine someone or something. He boxed her in so she could not get away from him. They tried to box in the animals, but they needed more space. Don't try to box me in.
See also: box

box in

v.
1. To trap or confine someone or something in a limited space or region: We boxed in the left corner of the living room with a new wall and curtains. The enemy forces had boxed us in on all sides.
2. To prevent someone from acting freely, usually by creating restrictions or obstacles: Being too strict will box in your students and prevent them from being creative. I want to make some changes at the office, but my boss has boxed me in with too many rules.
See also: box
References in classic literature ?
The occupant of the box in which the Greek girl sat appeared to share the universal admiration that prevailed; for he left his seat to stand up in front, so that, his countenance being fully revealed, Franz had no difficulty in recognizing him as the mysterious inhabitant of Monte Cristo, and the very same person he had encountered the preceding evening in the ruins of the Colosseum, and whose voice and figure had seemed so familiar to him.
All I call say is," continued the countess, taking up the lorgnette, and directing it toward the box in question, "that the gentleman, whose history I am unable to furnish, seems to me as though he had just been dug up; he looks more like a corpse permitted by some friendly grave-digger to quit his tomb for a while, and revisit this earth of ours, than anything human.
Catherine was restlessly miserable; she could almost have run round to the box in which he sat and forced him to hear her explanation.
Mrs Nickleby had scarcely been put away behind the curtain of the box in an armchair, when Sir Mulberry and Lord Verisopht arrived, arrayed from the crowns of their heads to the tips of their gloves, and from the tips of their gloves to the toes of their boots, in the most elegant and costly manner.
said this gentleman--shouldering off a great number of the crowd, who vanished presently before his cocked hat and fierce appearance--and he entered the box in a most agitated state.
We can reveal it's a pounds 10,000 jewellery box in the shape of the Palace of Versailles near Paris.