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1. To pat, press, or pack some loose substance down. A noun or pronoun can be used between "tamp" and "down." He tamped down the tobacco into his pipe and lit it with a match. Don't tamp the soil down too hard, or the seeds won't have space to grow.
2. To lower or dampen something. A noun or pronoun can be used between "tamp" and "down." The analyst is recommending that investors tamp down their expectations for the economy's performance. I don't want to tamp his hopes down, but I don't want him to end up disappointed, either.
3. To suppress or demoralize someone. A noun or pronoun can be used between "tamp" and "down." My ex-husband was always trying to tamp me down so that I would think I didn't deserve anything better in life. There will always be bullies who tamp you down for being different.
4. To limit, manage, or moderate someone. A noun or pronoun can be used between "tamp" and "down." My doctor prescribed some medication to tamp me down when my mood swings become too erratic. Whenever I get really stressed out or angry because of work, I always listen to classical music to help tamp me down.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
tamp something down
to pat or pack something down. Tamp the soil down over the seeds after you plant them. Please tamp down the soil firmly.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.