keep a tight rein on somebody/something

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keep a tight rein on someone or something

 and keep a close rein on someone or something
Fig. to watch and control someone or something diligently. (Alludes to controlling a horse by a tight grip on the reins.) The office manager kept a tight rein on the staff. Mary keeps a close rein on her children.
See also: keep, on, rein, tight

keep a tight rein on

exercise strict control over; allow little freedom to.
See also: keep, on, rein, tight

keep a tight ˈrein on somebody/something

(also keep somebody/something on a tight ˈleash) control somebody/something very carefully; give somebody/something very little freedom: The company must keep a tight rein on spending.She keeps her children on a tight leash to make sure they don’t get into trouble. OPPOSITE: give/allow somebody/something free/full rein
A leash is used to hold and control a dog, and a rein is used to control a horse.
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