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1. Literally, to form a border or boundary around something with a hedge (a row of shrubs or small trees). A noun or pronoun can be used between "hedge" and "in." We hedged the garden in with thorny rose bushes to keep larger animals out.
2. To surround someone or something, especially in a manner that impedes movement or egress. A noun or pronoun can be used between "hedge" and "in"; often used in passive constructions. We came out of the museum to find that several large tour buses had hedged in our car. Police hedged the protestors in and began arresting them one by one. The small town is hedged in on all sides by mountains.
3. To limit, constrain, or restrict someone or something's freedom or ability to do something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "hedge" and "in"; typically used in passive constructions. As teenagers grow and develop their own sense of independence, it's natural for them to begin feeling hedged in by their parents. Several large companies are complaining that they are being hedged in by the new legislation.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
hedge someone or something in
to enclose someone or something in a hedge. (See also hedge someone in.) Their overgrown yard has almost hedged us in. Their bushes hedged in our yard.
hedge someone in
Fig. to restrict someone. (See also hedge someone or something in.) Our decision hedged in the children so they could not have any flexibility. She hedged herself in by her own behavior.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.