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confine (someone or something) to (someone or something)

1. To restrict a person or animal to a particular place or area. Don't worry, the baby is confined to her playpen right now. Maddy is scared of dogs, so we need to confine Fido to the back yard.
2. To restrict something to a particular person or thing; to limit the scope of something. We need to confine our investigation to the area around the park for now. Please confine your requests to the essentials, so as to not overwhelm the staff.
See also: confine, to

confine (someone or something) within (something)

To restrict a person or animal to a particular place or area. Don't worry, I confined the baby within her playpen. Maddy is scared of dogs, so we need to confine Fido within the back yard.
See also: confine, within
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2022 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

confine someone or an animal to something

to limit someone or an animal to a particular place; to imprison someone or an animal in a particular place. Would you please confine the dog to the basement? She confined herself to the small room for over a year because of her fear of crowds.
See also: an, animal, confine, to

confine (someone or an animal) within something

to contain someone or an animal within something. We were unable to confine the dog within the yard. Could you confine all your car-repair mess within the garage?
See also: confine, within

confine something to someone or something

to limit something or the doing of something to a person or a thing. Please try to confine your comments to John. Can we confine tonight's discussion to the agenda?
See also: confine, to
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
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References in periodicals archive ?
The perception of the possibility of such technology followed from the theoretical prediction that highly sensitive immunoassays can be developed using far smaller amounts of antibody than have traditionally been perceived as necessary, implying that an individual assay can be performed using numbers of antibody molecules so low as to be confinable within a microspot a few square micrometers in area.
Understand "soft" like "wrinkle-free" is generic, not confinable to one mill source.
Like her grandmother, Sula Peace presents a problem for people who think in binary terms, people who insist that a character be discreet, consistent, and thus confinable. Should we admire Sula's courage, her determination to be free and to "make herself" (92)?
Whether coherent, confinable standards can be defined for the broad range of cultural properties Playing Darts canvasses is highly doubtful.
He understands that his thesis will not carry unless he can convince us, first, that there truly is a "community" out there united by consensus values and, second, that standards of cultural significance for varied categories of privately owned cultural property can be defined that are accurate, confinable, and, what may be the same thing, administrable.
Moving to the second reason, Sax's theoretical focus causes him to avoid, rather than confront, the genuine difficulties posed by his premises regarding "community" values and coherent and confinable standards of cultural significance.