Origin of curtailMiddle English curtailen, altered (by associated, association with taillen from Old French taillier: see tailor) from Old French curtald, curtal
An example of curtail is when a town wants to stop drunk driving.
transitive verbcur·tailed, cur·tail·ing, cur·tails
Origin of curtailMiddle English curtailen to restrict probably blend of Old French courtauld docked ; see curtal . and Middle English taillen to cut ( from Old French tailler ; see tailor . )
(third-person singular simple present curtails, present participle curtailing, simple past and past participle curtailed)
- We decided to curtail the event because people began to leave early.
- Could you please curtail the texting and driving while I am a passenger in your car?
- Let's try to curtail the time we spend indoors and enjoy the summer season.
- On heavy soils, however, the farmer cannot afford to curtail the time necessary for thorough cultivation of the land.
- In general, however, the tendency has been, under continental influence, to curtail its proportions.