1. That which terminates, circumscribes, restrains, or confines; the bound, border, or edge; the utmost extent; as, the limit of a walk, of a town, of a country; the limits of human knowledge or endeavor.
As eager of the chase, the maid
Beyond the forest's verdant limits strayed. --Pope.
2. The space or thing defined by limits.
The archdeacon hath divided it
Into three limits very equally. --Shak.
3. That which terminates a period of time; hence, the period itself; the full time or extent.
The dateless limit of thy dear exile. --Shak.
The limit of your lives is out. --Shak.
4. A restriction; a check; a curb; a hindrance.
I prithee, give no limits to my tongue. --Shak.
5. Logic & Metaph. A determining feature; a distinguishing characteristic; a differentia.
6. Math. A determinate quantity, to which a variable one continually approaches, and may differ from it by less than any given difference, but to which, under the law of variation, the variable can never become exactly equivalent.
Elastic limit. See under Elastic.
Prison limits, a definite, extent of space in or around a prison, within which a prisoner has liberty to go and come.
Syn: -- Boundary; border; edge; termination; restriction; bound; confine.
Lim·it v. t. [imp. & p. p. Limited; p. pr. & vb. n. Limiting.] To apply a limit to, or set a limit for; to terminate, circumscribe, or restrict, by a limit or limits; as, to limit the acreage of a crop; to limit the issue of paper money; to limit one's ambitions or aspirations; to limit the meaning of a word.
Limiting parallels Astron., those parallels of latitude between which only an occultation of a star or planet by the moon, in a given case, can occur.
Lim·it, v. i. To beg, or to exercise functions, within a certain limited region; as, a limiting friar. [Obs.]
n 1: the greatest possible degree of something; "what he did was
beyond the bounds of acceptable behavior"; "to the limit
of his ability" [syn: bounds, boundary]
2: final or latest limiting point [syn: terminus ad quem, terminal
3: the boundary of a specific area [syn: demarcation, demarcation
4: as far as something can go
5: the mathematical value toward which a function goes as the
independent variable approaches infinity [syn: limit
point, point of accumulation]
6: the greatest amount of something that is possible or
allowed; "there are limits on the amount you can bet"; "it
is growing rapidly with no limitation in sight" [syn: limitation]
v 1: place limits on (extent or access); "restrict the use of
this parking lot"; "limit the time you can spend with
your friends" [syn: restrict, restrain, trammel, bound,
2: restrict or confine, "I limit you to two visits to the pub a
day" [syn: circumscribe, confine]
3: decide upon or fix definitely; "fix the variables"; "specify
the parameters" [syn: specify, set, determine, fix]